Movie Mirrors Index

Hollywood Hotel

(1938 b 109')

En: 6 Ed: 5

A singer gets hired and fired in Hollywood while falling in love with the double of a movie star in this swinging musical with Benny Goodman's orchestra.

Benny Goodman's orchestra on motorcade sings "Hooray for Hollywood" to send singer Ronnie Bowers (Dick Powell) to Hollywood. Ronnie is met by publicity agent Bernie Walton (Allyn Joslyn) and checks into a lavish hotel. Louella Parsons (herself) interviews temperamental star Mona Marshall (Lola Lane) while she tries on clothes and signs a radio contract. Alexander Dupre (Alan Mowbray) informs Mona that she didn't get the part she wanted. Mona tells executive B. L. Faulkin (Grant Mitchell) she won't go to her premiere. Bernie selects Virginia (Rosemary Lane) as a double for Mona and calls Ronnie to take her. Ronnie goes to Mona's penthouse and keeps Alex out by hitting him. Virginia as Mona goes with Ronnie to the premiere. After the movie Ronnie dances with Virginia. They wade in a fountain and sing "I'm Like a Fish Out of Water."

Jonesie (Glenda Farrell) shows Mona the newspaper, and Mona complains to Faulkin while Alex shows his black eye. Mona quits, stalks out, and slaps Ronnie, who tells Bernie that photographer Fuzzy (Ted Healey) is his manager. At breakfast Virginia waits on them; but Ronnie leaves and is slapped by Mona again and is fired. Bernie tells him that Virginia is Mona's double. Virginia shows Ronnie the Hollywood Bowl and sings "I'll Remember this Moment." Fuzzie tries to get Ronnie a job singing, and Benny Goodman sees him on the street. Ronnie becomes a singing waiter, and Fuzzie washes dishes, breaking them along with Callahan (Edgar Kennedy). While Benny Goodman's orchestra plays on radio, Ronnie sings "Let That Be a Lesson to You" as he waits on Virginia. Walter Keaton (William B. Davidson) hires Ronnie to sing in his picture. Virginia warns Ronnie, but he and Fuzzie quit the drive-in.

On the set Keaton directs Mona, who acts with Alex, but the scene is spoiled by her father (Hugh Herbert) playing Uncle Tom. Keaton asks Ronnie to sing three songs for Alex for $100. In the movie Ronnie watches Alex mouthing his song. Louella Parsons invites Alex to sing on radio. Bernie plans to get Ronnie and asks Virginia, who insists on $500. Virginia goes to Ronnie; but he wants $1,000 and to be known. Fuzzie and Virginia take Alex for a ride and leave him in the country. Ronnie sings on radio and kisses Virginia as she arrives. Virginia goes on for Mona, and all sing "Hooray for Hollywood."

Swing music highlights this Hollywood story of talented newcomers supplanting temperamental and over-blown stars.

Copyright © 2001 by Sanderson Beck

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