Young Man With a Horn

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

How do you rate "Young Man With a Horn"?

Poor
1
2%
Average
6
14%
Good
20
47%
Excellent
16
37%
 
Total votes: 43

User avatar
Musiclover
Special Contributer
Posts: 1372
Joined: 05 Jan 2014, 16:42
Spam Prevention: Yes

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Musiclover »

I found it interesting that when this movie's character of Art Hazzard played his trumpet, it was actually dubbed by DD's longtime friend and former Les Brown colleague, Jimmy Zito.

dave
Honorary Member
Posts: 91
Joined: 16 Apr 2007, 00:34
Location: sf ca

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by dave »

Since most mentions have always said it was Harry James' playing, where'd you get this info?

DDay and Jimmy Zito can be seen exchanging a few words on YouTube on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. He appears to have been part of Carson's band on the show, and it was posted by "Howard G" ..
(Could be "Howard", huh?)

User avatar
Johnny
Honorary Member
Posts: 2739
Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Johnny »

In David Kaufman's book on Doris, it states that in the film Young Man With A Horn which was directed by Michael Curtiz and produced by Jerry Wald, the role of Rick Martin played by Kirk Douglas was first offered to James Stewart and then Ronald Reagan. The story was based on the life of master jazz musician Bix Beiderdeck who died at age twenty-eight in 1931.

In 1950, James Stewart would have been forty-two and Ronald Reagan would have been thirty-nine and Kirk Douglas was thirty- four.

It makes me think Marlon Brando who would have bern twenty-six or James Dean at nineteen could have brought a more sympathetic vulnerability to the character of Rick Martin. Montgomery Clift may have been the perfect choice to play the part. James Dean had the ability to look realistic as a teenager in Rebel Without A Cause when he actually was age twenty-three.

I would have loved to see Doris play opposite Marlon Brando , James Dean or Montgomery Clift.
Johnny

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

Definitely agree that Doris opposite Monty Cliff, James Dean or Marlon Brando would have been an event on the big screen mainly because they are polar opposites from her sunny, bright, optimistic persona. Among the three, I think Cliff's brooding, self-destructive nature could have made the tension in their scenes palpable. Brando's stylized intensity would have been exciting to watch in contrast to her more naturalistic approach to dramatic scenes. These guys tended to over-think things, delving into their Method Acting toolboxes, whereas Doris was an instinctive actor who wasn't into analyzing scenes or rehearsing them to death. I think she might have overpowered Dean whose acting style was intense but very delicate and high strung.

I can easily envision Doris playing the Eva Marie Saint role in On The Waterfront or Stella in A Streetcar Named Desire opposite Brando. And I think she would have been more interesting in the prostitute role opposite Cliff in From Here To Eternity because I never felt a flicker of sexual chemistry between Cliff and Donna Reed. However, as far as that film goes, the role that Doris would have killed in was the unfaithful wife played by Deborah Kerr. Make no mistake, Kerr was superb in the role, but Doris' against-type casting would have probably won her an Oscar. I also think she and Burt Lancaster would have made a most attractive onscreen couple.

Michael
Michael H

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

User avatar
Johnny
Honorary Member
Posts: 2739
Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Johnny »

Thanks Michael for your excellent insights and observations. I agree, Doris would have been excellent in From Here To Eternity in either the Donna Reid or Deborah Kerr parts.

James Dean and Montgomery Clift had a special chemistry with Elizabeth Taylor who had a natural instinctive acting style like Doris. Both men were attracted to warm empathetic women. Doris certainly demonstrated this same quality.

Doris liked Marlon Brando but did not think he should have made Last Tango in Paris. She saw the film with Paul Lynde and she commented they both felt embarrassed.

Your comments on Burt Lancaster made me think Doris may have done wonderful work in the Shirley Jones role opposite Burt in Elmer Gantry.

I had a fun conversation recently on roles that Doris played and if there were any of her contemporaries who could serve the role as well as Doris. I will introduce this subject in Off Topics to see if it generates any discussions.
Johnny

User avatar
Jas1
Honorary Member
Posts: 3940
Joined: 31 Mar 2005, 05:23
Location: Ireland

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Jas1 »

Johnny and Michael - some fab points.

I too can see Doris in the Deborah Kerr role in Eternity - opposite Lancaster on the beach!!! Wow! I love DK in the role but Doris would have been superb, as would the original choice - Joan Crawford .

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

Jas, yes, Joan Crawford would have been very interesting in that role but she strikes me as an odd fit with Burt Lancaster for some reason. Can't pinpoint why, exactly.

Back to YMWAH - I have come to love this imperfect yet fascinating film. It's almost like a film noir with music and without the murder mystery. Very atmospheric and authentic in look and feel to me. It was a significant step for Doris as a dramatic actress too and I think Douglas was excellent in the title role. He overacted in a few scenes but his intensity served the desperation of the character. The "happy" ending was a bit contrived and not true to the source material, but ah, that's Hollywood for you.

I do not see Ronald Reagan or Jimmy Stewart in the title role at all. Neither actor was particularly sexy or magnetic in my opinion although Stewart was certainly a brilliant actor.

Michael
Michael H

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

User avatar
Johnny
Honorary Member
Posts: 2739
Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Johnny »

I absolutely agree that Jimmy Stewart and Ronald Reagan would not have been appropriate casting for the role of Rick Martin/Bix Beiderbecke in Young Man With A Horn.

I think Kirk Douglas did a good job in Young Man With A Horn but I find there is an unlikeable quality, perhaps smugness or a genuine lacking in vulnerability that appears in his performances.
I find this same characteristic in Kirk's son, actor Michael Douglas' performances. Michael is a fine actor but I don't find him likeable.

Regarding casting Joan Crawford for the Deborah Kerr/Karen Holmes role in From Here To Eternity, I think the role needed a more understated, subtle actress like Deborah Kerr or Grace Kelly or Dorothy Malone.
Johnny

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

Well said, Johnny, particularly the part about Kirk's smugness and narcissism. I detect similar qualities in many of his performances and feel the same as you about Michael Douglas too.

Michael
Michael H

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

User avatar
texas gonzalo
Special Contributer
Posts: 289
Joined: 03 Apr 2009, 11:34
Spam Prevention: Yes

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by texas gonzalo »

For the sake of accuracy, it should be noted that Doris Day saw Marlon Brando in "Last Tango In Paris" with Billy DeWolfe, and correctly they were both very embarrased. Happy Days, Texas Gonzalo

User avatar
Johnny
Honorary Member
Posts: 2739
Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Johnny »

Thank you Texas! Facts matter.
Johnny

User avatar
Johnny
Honorary Member
Posts: 2739
Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Johnny »

The cinematography by Ted Mc Cord in Young Man With A Horn creates a dark and moody atmosphere that mirrors the anguish of the lead characters Rick Martin/Kirk Douglas and love interest Amy North/ Lauren Bacall. The cinematography presents as another character in the film. The music in Young Man With A Horn has been described as "the soul of the film". Special recognition must be given to the trumpet sounds of Harry James.

Ted Mc Cord first started working as a cinematography in 1921. Some of his films he worked on are The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Johnny Belinda, Starlift, I'll See You in My Dreams, East of Eden, Young At Heart, Giant, and The Sound of Music. He was nominated three times for an Academy award for Best Cinematography for Johnny Belinda, Two For The Seesaw and The Sound of Music.

Ted Mc Cord worked on four of Doris Day films.

In Tom Santopietro's book Considering Doris Day he writes, " Beautiful black and white cinematography by Ted Mc Cord effortlessly sets up mood and atmosphere, summoning up the smoke-tinged ambience of late night jazz clubs."

For anyone interested in cinematography there is an exceptional book called Masters of Light -Conversations with Contemporary Cinematographers by Dennis Schaefer and Larry Salvato -1984.
Johnny

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

The best way to appreciate YMWAH is as a classic movie lover, not a Doris Day fan.

Johnny, you are spot on in highlighting the wonderful cinematography by Ted McCord. The way he shot those nightclub scenes gave the film an authentic look and feel.

Thank you for keeping these interesting discussions going.

Michael
Michael H

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

User avatar
Musiclover
Special Contributer
Posts: 1372
Joined: 05 Jan 2014, 16:42
Spam Prevention: Yes

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by Musiclover »

Certainly the compliments for Ted McCort’s work are well deserved, and I think Curtiz’s direction was also excellent. To me, a lot of the credit for the film’s overall appeal goes to Ray Heindorf’s musical scoring. (He also co-wrote, with Sammy Cahn, “Melancholy Rhapsody” for the film and appears in the movie as the orchestra leader.) Heindorf scored several of Doris’s films, including “Romance on the High Seas” and “Calamity Jane,” and they worked very well together. He was Oscar-nominated for more than a dozen movies, winning 3 times.

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

You are so right, Judy.

The musical orchestrations are gorgeous and the songs contributed to the success of the film. I don't think there's ever been a better version of Too Marvelous For Words or With A Song In My Heart.

Michael
Michael H

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

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

Interesting review of this film from Jazzwise.com. Link below.

“Doris Day plays the jazz vocalist Jo Jordan, a transitional part for Day in which she was switching from a big band jazz singer into the quintessential wholesome Hollywood role model of the 1950s. Being close to the bone, one suspects this is why she came into her own playing this particular role as a levelheaded young torch singer. Day turns in some excellently poised vocal performances, too, especially on versions of 'The Very Thought of You' and 'Too Marvelous For Words' dragging her phrasing sensuously across the bar lines.”

https://www.jazzwise.com/features/artic ... ith-a-horn
Michael H

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

User avatar
howard
Special Contributer
Posts: 2189
Joined: 07 Mar 2005, 12:55
Location: north hollywood, California

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by howard »

Michael, so glad you're coming. Looking forward to seeing you again!
Like Irene Dunne done.

User avatar
jmichael
Honorary Member
Posts: 1853
Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: Young Man With a Horn

Unread post by jmichael »

howard wrote:
12 Feb 2020, 12:41
Michael, so glad you're coming. Looking forward to seeing you again!
I can't wait to see you, hg.

Michael
Michael H

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

Post Reply