With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, everyone is pushing for the romantic classics, whether it being hearing “Here’s to looking at you kid” in Casablanca, or seeing Noah and Allie finally reunite in ‘The Notebook’. But for those looking for something fun, different, and perhaps less of a tear jerker this Valentine’s Day, ‘Meet Me in St. Louis’ is great for any musical lover to see.
Starring Judy Garland, this film tells the story of four sisters who will have to move from St. Louis to New York for their father’s job. Garland plays Esther, the second oldest daughter who has her eyes set on their neighbor, John Truett. Her older sister Rose is waiting for an engagement, and the two younger sisters Agnes and Tootie are too busy having fun to care about boys. All are obviously attached to their hometown, and throughout the movie, viewers wonder if their father, Mr. Smith, will really make them leave what they love.
Each of the sisters are likeable in their own way and feel very natural. Esther and Tootie are particularly feisty, and their nontraditional antics drive the film. No one would expect a young girl in 1903 to bite a neighbor or throw flour in someone’s face. The dialogue of the sisters varies from sweet to witty and sometimes even to dated material that will give you a laugh. For instance, “Nice girls don’t let men kiss them until after they’re engaged!”
With strong characters, the icing on the cake is the irresistible music. Some pieces are classics that are heard today (‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’, anyone?) and others are sure to be stuck in your head as soon as the song ends. Each one feels like a true part of the story, not just a song to be thrown in because it is a musical. It might not be the film advertised on television this holiday, but for those looking for a break from the traditional and who love musicals, it could be the perfect fit for you.