Rhythm on the Range/Rhythm on the River [DVD]

Two classic musicals starring Bing Crosby are paired up on this double-feature DVD, a release sure to please fans of the legendary crooner. Rhythm on the Range and Rhythm on the River have both been transferred to disc in the full-frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and the audio for both features presents the original sound mix in Dolby Digital Mono. The dialogue for both features is in English, with optional subtitles in French and Spanish as well as closed captions in English. No additional bonus materials are included on this edition.
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Overview

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Special Features

  • Closed Captioned

Synopsis

Rhythm on the River
Billy Wilder was among the screenwriters of this easy-to-take Bing Crosby musical. Basil Rathbone dominates the proceedings as Oliver Courtney, a popular composer whose most successful tunes were actually ghost-written by musician Bob Summers (Crosby) and lyricist Cherry Lane (Mary Martin). Unaware of each other's existence at first, Bob and Cherry eventually discover that they've been duped by the pompous Courtney. They decide to break away from their employer and team up on their own, but the powerful Courtney manages to block their professional efforts. Ultimately, hero and heroine emerge triumphant, and Courtney is forced to help them get started on the road to success lest he be exposed as a charlatan. Piano prodigy Oscar Levant essays his first full-out comedy role as Courtney's sarcastic assistant, taking time out to poke fun at his own real-life phobias (in his memoirs, Levant recalled that he spent many a pleasant afternoon listening to the middle-aged Basil Rathbone discuss his digestive problems in vivid and eloquent detail!) None of the seven original songs in Rhythm on the River grew up to be hits, but the title tune did manage to get generous airplay thanks to Bing Crosby. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Rhythm on the Range
Bing Crosby's only western (outside of the 1966 version of Stagecoach), Rhythm on the Range stars Crosby as a casual cowpoke on his way back to the Wide Open Spaces after an eastern visit. He meets a young train stowaway (Frances Farmer), whom he regards as a hoydenish vagabond until learning that she's the owner of the ranch where he works. Farmer resists Crosby's charms until he rescues her from a gang of rustlers. Among the supporting cast is Mischa Auer, Bob "Bazooka" Burns, and, in her film debut, 19-year-old Martha Raye. The film also introduces the song hit "I'm an Old Cowhand", which is sung at one point or another by everyone in the cast, including Russian-born Mischa Auer. Rhythm on the Range was remade in 1956 as Pardners, with a few minor alterations--notably the casting of Jerry Lewis in the Frances Farmer role! ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Bing Crosby
    Bing Crosby - Bob Summer
  • Image coming soon
    Mary Martin - Cherry Lane
  • Basil Rathbone
    Basil Rathbone - Oliver Courtney
  • Oscar Levant
    Oscar Levant - Billy Starbuck
  • Image coming soon
    Oscar Shaw - Charlie Goodrich

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