I'll Be Darned

Rita Hayworth in Cover Girl (1944)

Whilst Rusty Parker (Rita Hayworth) enjoys being a dancer at the club owned by her boyfriend Danny McGuire (Gene Kelly) she has always longed for more which is why when publisher John Coudair (Otto Kruger) sees her in the show and wants to hire her to be a cover girl she jumps at a chance. It turns out that Rusty reminds John of the woman he loved as a young man and is in fact the grand daughter of his former sweetheart who he had hoped to marry. But becoming a successful cover girl leads to theatrical producer Noel Wheaton (Lee Bowman) not only putting on a lavish production to star Rusty but he romantically pursues her which of course threatens her relationship with Danny who feels like he is being left behind.

"Cover Girl" can be summed up by making a few quick observations. The first of which is that as the star of the movie Rita Hayworth unfortunately doesn't have a great deal to do in this movie other than looking gorgeous from start to finish, even when getting her face covered in beauty cream. I hate to say this but whilst Hayworth's natural likeability makes it easy to warm to the character of Rusty Parker she borders on being a dancing clothes horse in this movie.

Phil Silvers in Cover Girl (1944)

The second thing is that "Cover Girl" owes a lot to the talent of Gene Kelly because the dance scenes he choreographs and directs give the movie many of its more eye catching scenes. Although again Gene Kelly as an actor ends up sadly under used and only really gets a couple of minutes to shine. The same can be said of comic talents such as Phil Silvers and Eve Arden as whilst they both add some humorous pizzazz they are again sparingly used.

And then there is the storyline, a typical story of rags to riches as a chorus line dancer gets success but as always when one person in a relationship is on the rise the other feels left behind until those involved really think about what is important. It is familiar and okay as is everything in "Cover Girl" but everything in the movie is only okay and it is pretty much down to it being nicely put together that the movie ends up entertaining because there certainly isn't anything special about it to make it stand out from the crowd.

What this all boils down to is that if you are a fan of old musicals and the stars of yesteryear "Cover Girl" will entertain as it ticks many a box. But there is nothing stand out special about it to make it memorable other than for being an enjoyable movie with some big stars of the past and Rita Hayworth looking utterly gorgeous.

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