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A Song Is Born

A SONG IS BORN, Danny Kaye's last film for Samuel Goldwyn, the man who discovered him and made him a star, is a remake of BALL OF FIRE with the masterful Howard Hawks again at the helm, along with the same editor, cinematographer, and art director who had worked on the original only seven years earlier. Prof. Hobart Frisbee (Kaye), who heads a team of academics tracing the history of music, meets a pair of window washers (Buck and Bubbles) who sing the praises of jazz, jive, and boogie. While trying to gain some first-hand knowledge of this music, Prof. Frisbee meets Honey Swanson (Virginia Mayo, with her singing looped by Jeri Sullivan), a singer who is on the run from both her menacing gangster boy friend, Tony Crow (Steve Cochran), and the district attorney (Joseph Crehan) who wants to nail him. Honey hides out with Frisbee but is nabbed by Tony, who returns her to the professor's foundation to show up Frisbee as a sissy, only to receive the surprise of his life at the hands of the professor and his aged fellow musicologists. A SONG IS BORN is a gleeful movie with nonstop music, but not enough of the madcap, free-wheeling comedy for which Kaye had become famous. The film is also without the brilliant special material that Kaye's wife, Sylvia Fine, used to write for him. Members of Music's Hall of Fame appear as themselves and anyone with an ear for big band music will love this picture.