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Ready, Willing and Able

(1937 b 94')

En: 5 Ed: 4

A songwriter and a singer put on a show when they get a college girl with the same name as an English star.

Barry Granville (Ross Alexander) and songwriter Pinky Blair (Lee Dixon) are too broke to pay tailor Angelo (Adrian Rosley) for their pants; but Edward McNeil (Addison Richards) agrees to produce their show if they get Jane Clarke from London. On a ship college girl Jane Clarke (Ruby Keeler) dances in the show of Clara Heineman (Louise Fazenda) and sings "Be Handy with Your Feet." Jane has been engaged to Truman (Hugh O'Connell) for two years, and he kisses her good-night on the cheek. Agent Jay Van Courtland (Allen Jenkins) learns that Jane is arriving on the boat and says she'll get $1500 a week if she signs a contract. Angie (Carol Hughes) persuades her. Pinky stops men removing his piano by playing it. As the landlady demands the rent, Barry gets a call that Jane arrived. Truman tries to talk Jane out of it, but Clara offers to help. Jane and Angie try to talk like the English. Van brings in Barry and Pinky, and Barry talks the opening song "Too Marvelous for Words" to Jane, who signs for the show. Barry takes the contract to McNeil and starts spending money on the show. At a party Barry sings "Just a Quiet Evening," and Pinky tap dances with Jane; but Barry takes her home, as Truman peeps in.

Truman is kept out of rehearsal, and Pinky wonders when Jane will sing. Jane listens to a record of Jane Clarke and tells Angie she can't sing like that. Barry re-assures Jane, and Pinky tells her the show depends on her. Barry sings "Marvelous," but Jane tells him she can't sing. Barry gets angry and dismisses the company. Truman tells Barry that Jane is his fiancé. McNeil learns that Jane is not the English star, but Barry says he'll do the show. Jane learns that Jane Clarke is sailing to New York. At the dock McNeil knocks down Pinky and is arrested. The English Jane Clarke (Wini Shaw) rejects requests by Barry and Jane; but Van says that she was Amy Callahan and gets her to do the show. Amy sings, and Van says that Jane is ready, willing and able; so Barry puts her in the chorus. Clara recites Shakespeare guided by instructions for scenery.

Barry needs $10,000 to pay for costumes and scenery. Jane tells Pinky that she will get it and finds Truman embracing Amy. Truman tells Barry and Pinky he has money, and they soon get it to open the show. Jane tells Barry she tore up her contract, and Angie tells Barry that Jane got Truman to offer the money. In the show Barry and Amy do "Marvelous," and Jane does it with pretty women, who type as Jane and Pinky tap dance on the keys. Barry tells Jane he is sorry, and they kiss.

This show offers entertainment while showing some of the struggles that go into making it happen.

Copyright © 2000 by Sanderson Beck

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