Romance on the High Seas

You are invited to rate and comment on the 39 films of Doris Day.

How do you rate "Romance on the High Seas"?

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0
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Average
2
3%
Good
15
23%
Excellent
47
73%
 
Total votes: 64

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Doris Martin
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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MINE TOO

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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I looked at Romance On the High Seas last weekend and it brightened my entire day. This is what it says so well on the back of the dvd jacket cover.

A new Day for the movies. America's sweetheart makes her staring debut.

Bon Voyage! Georgia Garrett's singing career may not be going anywhere but she is. She's on a cruise, sailing under the name of Mrs. Elvira Kent while the real Elvira secretly stays home to spy on her presumably philandering hubby. Meanwhile, the husband hires a spy to snoop on his supposedly voyaging wife.

Doris Day makes her maiden film voyage debuting as Georgia in a colourful bauble afloat on romantic seas. The studio surrounds the sunny overnight sensation with top-talent: Michael Curtiz directs, the Epstein brothers provide the script, Busby Berkeley guides the musical numbers, Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn create the tunes and co-stars Oscar Levant and Jack Carson. "It's Magic" Day sings. Yes it is!

Also in the cast is the wonderful Janis Paige, Don De Fore, and S.Z. Zakall


Special features:

Vintage musical short- Let's Sing a Song From The Movies

Classic Cartons: I Taw A Putty Tat

Theatrical Trailer

How fortunate Doris was to be able to work with such talented individuals in a really funny film that still be enjoyed as much today as in 1948.

I wonder if this film has ever been remade. I think it would be wonderful what some Director would do with it today. We certain need more laughter in our world. It has a Pink Panther film kind of feeling.
Johnny

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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ROTHS is on TCM's schedule here in the U.S. (and Canada?) on June 23. It's not shown often, so this will be a treat for those who don't have their own copy of it.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Romance On The High Seas -1948
Romance On The High Seas -1948
According to David Kaufmann's book, Judy Garland was scheduled to star in Romance On The High Seas, then Betty Hutton. When Betty Hutton could not do the picture because she was pregnant, Lauren Bacall and Jane Powell were considered for the role. Hutton's sister Marion who was a band- singer was suggested. The studio wanted a star in the part like Mary Martin or Ginny Simms. Lauren Bacall did not think her voice was strong enough to do the picture and she wanted to stay in Mexico with Humphrey Bogart who was filming The Treasure of Sierra Madre.

The Director Michael Curtiz held out for Doris Day to play the role of Georgia Garrett. Doris auditioned at Warner Bothers for the role on or about March 27-1947.When Curtiz asked Doris about her acting experience she said, " In school when I was nine years old, I played a duck" Her manager, Al Levy became nervous. Curtiz was impressed by her honesty. She sang the song," Embraceable You." She burst into tears. Curtiz asked her to sing a second song. Doris sang, "What Do You Do on a Rainy Night In Rio". Curtiz offered Doris a screen test after this first meeting. She signed her contract with Michael Curtiz Productions in mid-April starting at $500.00 per week. Doris had 27 gowns designed for her by costumer Milo Anderson for the picture.

She completed her photo and sound tests on May 2-1947. Production on Romance On The High Seas began on Stage 4 on June 2-1947 and was completed on August 4-1947. Doris' work hours were from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. which was a significant change from her time singing with a band..On November 11, 1947, the film's title was changed from Romance in High C to Romance On The High Seas and was released on June 25-1948.
Johnny

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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It really was a remarkable screen debut- fabulous. And Milo Anderson did some wonderful costumes.

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Renie
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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I remember when it came to Chicago where I grew up. I first saw it when I was 7 years old. What I remember best is that I was so taken with Doris' singing and was otherwise bored with the movie. As I look back, I know I really liked hearing Doris sing on the radio but I wondered what she looked like. Then, with the movie I got to both hear and see her sing. What a treat. Regarding my boredom, what seven year old that you know could follow the plot of that movie and understand the dialogue and innuendo? As I get older, I find that I enjoy everything about this movie. It's great fun to watch. Though, to this day, I still don't know what "chooch" means. Anyone else know?

Renie

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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One of the things I like about this film is the snappy dialogue. Chooch derives from the Italian word ciuccio.
Someone on the forum who speaks that language can confirm this, but I think it is a disparaging term for a stupid or clueless person.

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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Online definition of chooch:
chooch
noun
a foolish person; "ass".
Don't be such a chooch!
More words with the same meaning: unintelligent person, idiot.
Etymology speculation: "Ciuccio" is an Italian word for ass, i.e. donkey. In Southern Italy, it is common to shorten frequently-used words. So, "ciuccio" became "ciucc", which is pronounced "chooch".
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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Georgia Garrett was a "hip" chick - and this lingo suited the character - as Anita O'Day said in her book "High Times/ Hard times" - "in those days we talked like Downbeat was written" -

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jmichael
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Jas1 wrote:Georgia Garrett was a "hip" chick - and this lingo suited the character - as Anita O'Day said in her book "High Times/ Hard times" - "in those days we talked like Downbeat was written" -
That is a great quote, James, thanks for posting it. So true. And you are correct - Milo Anderson designed her costumes in this film.

I have to agree that Doris really came off well in her film debut, tossing off one wisecrack after another with great skill. I wish she had played other characters who were a bit on the bawdy side, or should I say, the "street smarts" side of things. She gave Georgia Garrett enough grit to make her believable as a honky tonk singer with big dreams and an endearing directness. Years later, Doris would bring a more mature kind of earthiness to her portrayal of Babe Williams in PG. ROTHS remains one of my Top Ten favorite Doris films.

Michael
Michael H

"There's nothing in my bedroom that bothers me."

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Renie
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Renie »

Thank you all for your replies and the chooch info. And, I LOVED Doris as Babe Williams!

Renie

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

Michael I agree too, it is a pity Doris didn't play more bawdy characters with a heart - of all her screen characters, I think Georgia Garrett would be the one I'd most like to spend time with. I think as Christian Science and Marty took over, there was less and less chance of Doris playing a character such as Georgia Garrett later in her career- pity.

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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Great review, just published by 'the blonde at the film':

Image

Caption says pink gown - it looks green to me - but that might just be me?

https://theblondeatthefilm.com/2017/06/ ... high-seas/
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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Bryan - I thought my colours were off lol - most certainly "pink" to me. :roll:

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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Thanks, Jas - well that confirms I'm still a bit colour blind. :)

But it's not a deep pink, is it? :wink:
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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Thanks Bryan for posting the interesting review on Romance On The High Seas. I found the comments from New York Times critic Bosley Crowther on Doris Day's character in the film challenging. He sounds elitist. He describes her character as, " spreading noisiness' all over the place". Perhaps he has forgotten what it is to be young and carefree. Crowther also blamed Director Michael Curtiz for allowing Doris' "noisy" performance.
The audience in most cases prove to be the best critics. They fell in love with the joy, humour, confidence and dreams of Doris' character, Georgia Garrett who delights in every screwball scene. They fell in love with Doris singing It's Magic.
I find Crowther's criticism on the calypso number being performed by Jack Carson valid. There were authentic calypso musicians that were not showcased.
Romance On The High Seas is a great gift that introduced Doris Day to the world of movies. Michael Curtiz's brilliance recognized Doris' authenticity and directed her not to take acting lessons. Doris is a natural, charismatic dynamic, actress, singer and dancer that has a infinite work ethic. Romance On The High Seas opened the door to the world of film where Doris could share the beauty of her talents. The audience welcomed her with open arms.
Johnny

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Johnny, your comment that critic Bosley Crowther sounding elitist is very perceptive; his background was just that. In his film reviews, he was considered by many, even some of his peers, to be unnecessarily negative and mean-spirited. This was particularly evident in his disdain for Joan Crawford. (I think the best part of Crowther's legacy was not his writing but his grandson, who was one of the heroes at the World Trade Center on 9/11/01. Search on the internet for Welles Remy Crowther.)

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Thank you so much Musiclover for you information on Crowther's grandson. I intend to read more about Crowther. I am wondering if he became too caught up in his own importance.

To be a good film critic it is important to never lose the love and joy for movies. I wonder if critics project their personal cynicism and world views in their reviews or do they remain objective. This is a topic for another day.

In closing I will quote my dad when our family left a Doris Day movie, " You always feel great after seeing Doris on the big screen, she never disappoints".

Thanks again.
Johnny

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Bryan- most certainly not deep or vibrant pink - re the dress- more champagne.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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This year is the 70th anniversary of Doris' first film in 1948, Romance On The High Seas. It is a bright, breezy fun-filled musical with beautiful songs that are elevated by Doris' sensuous voice.

In David Kaufman's book on Doris Day it states:
"Curtis was apparently introduced to Day --"for one of the most unlikely auditions in Hollywood history"--on or about March 27, 1947. That's the date in any event, of a note the director wrote to Jack Warner, explaining that he wanted to break with movie musical tradition of working with an established film star and go with someone fresh and unknown to replace sassy (Betty) Hutton. When Al Levy showed up with Day to audition for Curtiz at his bungalow on the Warner's lot, the director suddenly appeared in his outer office. "Not now", growled Curtiz, as Levy implored him to consider Day. But "a look costs you nothing", he thought to himself as he reconsidered the offer - "often it pays much". He was used to artificial girls with lips rouged and Day struck him as "nice and real". Her hair had a western windblown something. She also looks sad. I like her. I invite them inside. I ask her about experience. Usually you listen for an hour how they understudied Cornell, how they just missed a Broadway hit. "Nothing", she says. "In a school when I was nine years old, I played a duck." According to Curtiz, Levy was beginning "to sweat". "He thinks she doesn't sell me but her honesty sells me. She is very sexy too, bit in an unsexy way. Her sex sneaks up on you."

It is difficult to recall any other actor whose film debut that made such a strong and lasting impact on the film industry.

It would be interesting to see Romance On The High Seas be remade as a musical for today's audience. My only reservation is that today's comedic writing is often vulgar and used as a substitute for bright wit and sophisticated writing.
There is hope in that the recent musicals La La Land as well as The Greatest Showman are film musical classics.

Seventy years later Romance On The High Seas is still funny, joyful and a pleasure to watch.
Johnny

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Johnny, a remake would never work for today- unless it was set still in the late 1940s- social media today would make it almost impossible for anyone to impersonate a socialite.

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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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That's a great account by David Kaufman, Johnny - and funny! :D Thanks for that - will have to remember it's the 70th Anniversary of the film this year - release date: 3 July 1948 (USA) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0040745/
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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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Thanks Jas for the social media perspective influencing remakes\updates of classic films. It would be a challenge to update Romance On The High Seas.

I imagine social media would make it difficult to update Pillow Talk and Midnight Lace. There was one film update on a Doris Day \Rock Hudson comedy starring Ewan McGregor and Renee Zellwegger called Down With Love in 2003.
Johnny

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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I really liked Down with Love- which was an homage to Doris and Rock - particularly Lover come Back - however, I was very annoyed they did not use Doris' version of Fly me to the Moon - in the film - using Frank's and Astrid's. Doris version is on a par with these others and equally [if not even more] sexy.

Read Ewan McGregor and Renee Zelweger - talking about the opulence of this film [compared to usual film making now/then] they were treated as Doris and Rock would have been with sumptuous sets, fabulous made to measure costumes, costume tests, the works.

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Re: Romance on the High Seas

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I felt the same way about the song, Jas. Couldn't figure out why they wouldn't use DD's wonderful version. What could have been more perfect for that film? I disagree, however, about the film itself. I understood it was to be an homage, but to me, it seemed more like a mockery.
Like Irene Dunne done.

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