Tuesday, October 25, 2011

On Moonlight Bay(1951).

On Moonlight Bay(1951). Directed by Roy Del Ruth which tells the story of the Winfield family at the turn of the century. The movie is based loosely on the Penrod stories by Booth Tarkington. There was a 1953 sequel, By the Light of the Silvery Moon.

Banker George Winfield and his family, move into a beautiful new house. The family, hates the move, but George, wants his children to have a better life.

His son Wesley, makes friends with Jim Sherman, who shows off his father's gun, which, he says, was previously owned by Jesse James. Margie, sees Wesley and Jim, take the gun into a barn. She tries to stop them, but accidentally fires the gun herself, causing the barn door to fall on Jim's older brother, William.

After Bill, mistakes Margie for a boy, he soon discovers she is a girl and is attracted to her. Margie, gets a much needed make over, before their first date..

On their date, he tries to win her a doll at a game booth. When he misses, he accuses the barker of running a dishonest game, the man offers Margie three free throws. Margie, of course hits them and wins the doll, herself.

It is not long, before George asks Bill, what his intentions are toward Margie and after Bill makes some rude comments about bankers, George forbids him to date her. Music teacher Hubert Wakley, is more to her father's liking.

One day, Wesley, fails to do his homework and decides to use the love letter Margie is writing to Bill, who is away at school. He reads it aloud to the class and the romantic letter makes him a laughingstock. Now angry with Margie, Wesley decides to punish her by ruining her date with Hubert. His plan backfires and Margie, is so happy with Wesley, that she gives him a big hug.

Margie, has been taking dancing lessons and on the way home, she gets into a snowball fight with some boys, where she falls and breaks her ankle.

Later, Wesley watches a movie about the terrible effect that drinking has on one family, and when he is caught sleeping in class, makes up a story for the teacher, about his father's drinking problem.

On Christmas Eve, Bill arrives home and hears Wesley's story, second hand. Wanting to know the truth, Bill marches over to the Winfields' house. Seeing George asleep on the couch, Bill believes he is in a drunk and throws water on him. Now, everyone knows about Wesley's lie and he runs off to join a group of carolers.
At the end of the school year, Bill makes a speech announcing that his entire class has enlisted in the Army.

A brokenhearted Margie, runs to meet Bill on the troop train, where Bill proposes. Her father still disapproves but, later, on Wesley's twelfth birthday, George's aunt Martha, brings Wesley a slingshot, that she took away from George, when he was a boy. During the birthday party, Bill arrives and formally asks George, for Margie's hand in marriage. George again refuses, until Wesley breaks a window with George's old slingshot and reminds him of the mistakes he made in his youth.

This charmer and its sequel By the Light of the Silvery Moon, showcase the multi-talented Doris Day. Billy Gray, as Day's younger brother, had perfect comic timing. Along with Mary Wickes, the no-nonsense maid, is another scene-stealer.

Video: ALL songs from the film,On Moonlight Bay(1951).

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