Sunday, August 12, 2012

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954)

Hunky mountain man Adam Pontipee (hunky Howard Keel) needs a wife, so he heads into town to fetch one. Of course with the women folk being in short supply in the old west, he is assured there are none available. Not to be dissuaded, Adam sets out to do just that.

Adam happens upon young, pretty Milly (Jane Powell) and after forty seconds of convincing, she agrees to be his wife. Once to the Pontipee homestead, she quickly learns that her fate is less of a mountain wife and more indentured servant to Adam and his six boorish brothers. She hatches a plan to con her unsuspecting friends in town to share in her personal hell. But first she must civilize these ginger barbarians.

What a silly-ass movie! Not exactly a girl-power kind of film. At one point the men kidnap the six women and keep them prisoner over the winter to woo their hearts. Ah, traditional marriage! Here's what I found interesting:

MGM was convinced it would be a flop so they cut the budget and made sets instead of shooting on location. The cheesy sets added to it's camp appeal and it was a huge cash cow for the studio. The movie featured catwoman Julie Newmar as one of the captured women. Also, I realized after seeing it that two principle actors were in horror movies I've seen (Keel in The Day of the Triffids and Russ Tamblyn in The Haunting).

The choreographed numbers were quite impressive, if you like that sort of thing. There was a long take wood chopping song number that was technically impressive. Also a barn raising dance number that took almost half of the shooting schedule. Musicals aren't exactly my bag, but it still held my interest. My wife likes them and otherwise hates old movies, so I took the opportunity to watch it with her. AMRU 3.
"A man can't sleep when he sleeps with sheep."

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