Best Foot Forward (1943)

Best Foot Forward (1943): 2/5

Bud Hooper (Tommy Dix) is a cadet at Winsocki Military Academy. He invites Lucille Ball to be his date at one of the Academy’s dances.

Not expecting a reply, he invites his girlfriend Helen (Virginia Weidler) and turns her name into the academy for approval. His evening is spoiled when he receives a reply from Ball, who decides to accept under pressure from her agent.

Ball soon shows up in town and expects to escort him to the dance. Bud must choose between the beautiful star and the girl he loves.

It could be because I watched this directly after Love Me Tonight, but Best Foot Forward didn’t wow me.

In comparison to other musicals of the time, and especially its fellow MGM musicals, it’s nowhere near grand. The songs are lackluster when compared to the brilliance of Meet Me in St. Louis (1944) and Cabin in the Sky (1943).

One of the earliest songs, “Wish I May,” is very fun. The accompanying dance is well-choreographed. If only the film had kept this momentum!

Some of the performers overact in the worst way, especially Bud’s two best friends from the Academy. Though Weidler, Walker and Ball all give very solid performances as previously mentioned, their efforts alone can’t save the film.

With slight improvements in the songs and a few casting changes, this could have been a great musical. Unfortunately, it is enjoyable to watch once, but I probably wouldn’t pick it up again despite my love for Lucille Ball.

Advertisements

Share your thoughts! (Note: Comments close 90 days after publication.)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.