Movie Monday: Tea for Two 1950
Whenever I wonder what the world’s coming to these days, I remind myself that Doris Day isn’t starring in technicolor movies any more. Of course, if she still was, everyone would be happily tapping their toes, grinning at strangers who pass by, and (let’s not forget!) falling in love. Right? Well, others might rather punch kitties in the face after listening to Ms. Day sing too many renditions of Tea for Two, but I feel positively wonderful. Peace, love, and musicals for everyone!
Tea for Two is not only a ridiculously easy song to incorporate into every day life (Ahem, you can take my word for it if you must.), but it’s also a delightful romantic comedy featuring the classic musical-within-a-musical format which was oh so popular in the 1940s and 1950s. You know, sort of like those box-within-a-box Christmas gift gags (which are possibly as annoying to some people as Doris Day on repeat.). In fact, the story even begins in a nice frame format as the children of Nanette Carter (Doris Day) are told the story of how their parents fell in love back in 1929. (Cue the flashback.)
Nanette is the wealthy ward of her loving, and foolishly generous Uncle Max who just discovers he is losing his fortune in the Stock Market crash of ’29. Unaware of the money situation, Nanette promises a load of cash to a shiesty broadway producer who promises her the lead role for her investment. Not wanting to say no to his niece, Uncle Max makes a deal with her that if she says “yes” at any time in the next 48 hours, he doesn’t owe her a dime of the money she promised to the show. Stubborn Nanette vows she will only say no, but to her dismay, she’s forced into all sorts of predicaments where all she wants to do is say yes! (Cue the frustrating love scene.)
Of course, the storyline is a little (okay, a lot) preposterous, and the acting is on par with what you might expect from a fluffy ’50s musical, but boy howdy if it’s not an entertainingly nostalgic movie to watch! The dancing is loads of fun, and of course the music is nice, but my favorite part is drooling over the costumes and making clever musical connections that are awfully hilarious inside my own head. (Okay, if you must know, I thought it was fun that the two leading men from Oklahoma play major parts in a movie that is all about saying no. Ado Annie, anyone? Girl can’t say no. It’s funny! …It’s funny, right…?)
Bottom line? If you like Doris Day, you’ll love this movie. But if you love Doris Day, you’ve probably seen it already. So… go watch it again. It’s available instantly on Netflix!