Holiday Inn (1942)

Holiday Inn (1942), produced and directed by Mark Sandrich.

From an era prolific with singing-and-dancing pictures, this one has some standout features:

The downsides are the expected limitations of musicals: thin plot, some weak skits and inconsequential love triangles.

The female leads are talented and likeable, but we wonder what a little more star power would have provided. In fact, they wanted Ginger Rogers and Rita Hayworth but didn't have the budget. That would have been something to see!

This has a famous black-face Lincoln's Birthday number, which I'm told has been censored on TV. The song is a good one. Minstrelsy obviously seems very weird today, although not intended as racist or offensive at the time. Patronizing and insensitive: sure. It was still big in the 1940s; by the time we get to White Christmas (1954) they could still do minstrel numbers, but without the blackface.

Misc notes:

Available on Blu-ray in both original and colorized versions, with the traditional pastel palette for color. The B&W version is from a better master. A commentary track gives good background info.

For a change I've used the colorized versions for the thumbnails: