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Lady Be Good

(1941 b 112')

En: 6 Ed: 5

Songwriters marry and divorce and marry again in this Gershwin musical.

Judge Murdock (Lionel Barrymore) questions songwriter Dixie Donegan (Ann Sothern), who tells how she met her songwriting husband Eddie Crane (Robert Young). Billy (Dan Dailey) tells Eddie he doesn't like his tune and leaves. Eddie tells Dixie he needs a partner. She sings the words for "You'll Never Know." Dixie's lawyer Blanton (Tom Conway) calls Marilyn Marsh (Eleanor Powell) to testify. She says that Eddie went Park Avenue. After the party Eddie seems to be too busy to work, and Dixie asks for her freedom. Judge Murdock grants the uncontested divorce. Dixie stays with Marilyn but can't find a song-writing partner. Eddie's servants left, and he calls Dixie to come over and help him. As she cleans up, he plays a new song. She writes words, and they sing "Your Words and My Music." Dixie starts to go to bed and then runs out. Dixie calls Buddy Crawford (John Carroll) to sing the song, and he wants to date her. Eddie is jealous of Buddy, who knocks him out into the arms of Joe Willet (Red Skelton). In a nightclub Buddy sings the new song, followed by Joe's girlfriend Lull (Virginia O'Brien). Eddie joins Dixie and Buddy, who dances with Marilyn. Eddie and Dixie argue.

Eddie takes flowers to Dixie to work. They compose "Lady Be Good," and it's a hit. Publisher Max Milton (Reginald Owen) honors Dixie and Eddie at a dinner, and Dixie sings "The Last Time I Saw Paris." In a cab Eddie wants to wed Dixie again, but she says no. Buddy proposes to Marilyn, who wants to make Eddie jealous to get Dixie and him together again, and she gets Buddy to give Dixie a diamond ring. At home Marilyn practices her tap dance with her dog. Buddy comes in and kisses Dixie while Marilyn calls Eddie about the ring. Eddie says he is bringing a gun and looks for Dixie. Marilyn kisses Buddy so Eddie can see; but Buddy kisses back, and Marilyn has to call for Dixie. Eddie finds Dixie, who says she loves only him. Dixie and Eddie are wed again. Marilyn tells Buddy she got jealous and agrees to marry him. Dixie expects to work on a show, but Eddie wants a honeymoon. Dixie tells him she'll live with Marilyn until they finish the show.

Dixie tells Judge Murdock that Eddie then left her and is writing a symphony. Dixie finds Eddie with Mrs. Carter Wardley and argues with him. In Dixie's show "Fascinating Rhythm" is sung; the Berry brothers and then Marilyn dance. Judge Murdock refuses to give Dixie another divorce, because they still love each other. After Dixie leaves, Eddie comes to the Judge and opposes the divorce. Finally Joe drives Eddie to find Dixie, and the three couples sing "Lady Be Good" again.

She hopes he will not think they are married so that the romance and working relationship will continue without being taken for granted.

Copyright © 2002 by Sanderson Beck

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