On the Town

98 minutes 1949

A fine, freewheeling musical (1949) by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly, based on the Betty Comden-Adolph Green book, which was in turn based on the Leonard Bernstein ballet Fancy Free. Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Jules Munshin are three sailors out for a day in New York; Vera-Ellen, Ann Miller, and Betty Garrett are the girls they spend it with. With no structure or pacing to speak of, it's a loopy, anything-goes movie, graced with the freshness of a Hollywood nouvelle vague. Remarkably, it was Donen and Kelly's first directorial effort.

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