Judy Garland is one of the best actresses to ever appear on the silver screen. Here she is just a good as she always is, but someone who steals the show is Margaret O’Brien. A young girl in this movie, only about 8 or 9 though she plays a someone who is 5. Here, she’s probably the best child actor I’ve ever seen, it makes sense that the Academy Awards gave her a Special Award for Child Acting. Something I believe they handed out only once, to Margaret O’Brien, for her role in this movie.
I also discovered that Judy Garland was apparently working on this movie for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Working all night on recording music and then all day acting, and people were still upset with her for being late on set. Still, she acts and sings as good as she ever has in this movie.
Though some of the songs are okay in this movie, I feel they aren’t too great overall. They feel like they’re just being phoned in just a bit and some of it isn’t original. Maybe all of it actually, I’m not familiar with this era of music too well. But it’s okay, I like that we get to hear Judy Garland’s amazing singing voice again. I just wish she was singing better music.
Much like the music, the story also feels a bit like it’s just phoning it in. Just standard movie/musical stuff to keep it going. I know it’s based on a book, but not all books should be adapted to movies. Something like this probably has more interesting internal issues with the characters, either that or it’s just like this and mostly just focusing on a family and how they change in the course of a year. It’s not bad, okay, but not something that stands out as anything but the bare minimum requirements for a musical like this.
Why you should watch it before you die: For Judy Garland’s and Margaret O’Brien’s performances. Or you’re just into musicals.
+6: Decent musical
+1: Judy Garland’s performance
+1: Margaret O’Brien’s performance
-1: Lackluster story
-0.5: Lackluster Music