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The Andy Hardy Collection, Vol. 2 [5 Discs] [DVD]

Release Date:07/09/2013
This collection of ten films from the greatly popular series of Andy Hardy movies includes A Family Affair, Judge Hardy's Children, Love Finds Andy Hardy, The Hardys Ride High, Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever, The Courtship of Andy Hardy, Andy Hardy's Double Life, Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble, Love Laughs at Andy Hardy, and Andy Hardy Comes Home.

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    Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever
    This sixth installment in MGM's "Andy Hardy" series is among the best, thanks in great part to the breezy direction of "Woody" Van Dyke. In this outing, teenaged Andy (Mickey Rooney) develops a crush on his high-school drama teacher Rose Meredith (Helen Gilbert). Andy's dad Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone) knows that his son is riding for a fall, but he decides to let the boy find out for himself that there's a big difference between youthful infatuation and true love. Sure enough, when Andy proposes marriage to Rose, she reveals that she already has a fiancee. It's a crushing blow for our hero-but only temporarily, since his perennial sweetheart Polly Benedict (Ann Rutherford) is waiting in the wings. Outside of the puppy-love main plot, the film is at its best when Andy writes a play as a vehicle for himself and Rose, with the expected silly results. Less than five months after the release of Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever, Columbia Pictures "answered" the film with the zany 2-reel comedy Andy Clyde Gets Spring Chicken. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Andy Hardy Comes Home
    With Andy Hardy Comes Home, Mickey Rooney hoped to revive the character -- and the movie series -- that had brought him fame and fortune back in the 1930s and 1940s. Returning to his home town of Carvel after several years absence, lawyer Andy Hardy (Rooney) brings his wife Jane (Patricia Breslin) and two children Andy Jr. (played by Rooney's real-life son Teddy) and Jimmy (Johnny Weissmuller Jr.) along on his sentimental journey. Andy's dad Judge Hardy is long gone (though the late Lewis Stone appears in flashbacks), but his mom (Fay Holden), sister Marian (Cecilia Parker), and Aunt Milly (Sara Haden) welcome him with open arms. After a while, Andy reveals the real reason for his return: now in the employ of an aircraft company, he hopes to convince his bosses to build a plant in Carvel. The fly in the ointment is crooked businessman Chandler (Frank Ferguson), who, when Andy refuses to purchese Chandler's land at a ridiculously exorbitant price, mounts a campaign to discredit the Hardy family. A pleasant enough diversion, Andy Hardy Comes Home failed to spark interest in a new Hardy Family series. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Love Finds Andy Hardy
    The third of MGM's Andy Hardy series (discounting the "pilot" film, A Family Affair) stars, as ever, Mickey Rooney as the teenaged protagonist. Andy finds himself in dutch with girlfriend Polly Benedict (Ann Rutherford) when he agrees to escort his best friend's gal, Cynthia Potter (Lana Turner). Having gone out of town, Andy's buddy wants Cynthia kept out of circulation, and pays Andy to make sure she stays that way. Andy is in no position to refuse: he needs the dough to pay for a car he's just purchased. Further complications ensue when Andy falls for a third girl, Betsy Booth (Judy Garland). It is up to Betsy to play little miss fix-it when Andy's romantic entanglements threaten to overwhelm him. (Mickey Rooney could have used a "Betsy Booth" in real life as well!) Originally running shorter than its present 90 minutes, Love Finds Andy Hardy was expanded during filming to showcase the splendid singing talents of Judy Garland. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble
    College boy Andy continues his studies in this comedy. Well, at least he should be studying. Unfortunately, he seems to be more interested in the pretty co-eds, especially the rambunctious Wilde twins. They cause poor Andy so much trouble that he begins plotting to drop out of school. Fortunately, Judge Hardy arrives at the last minute and gives his boy a good talking-to and sets things to right. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi

    The Courtship of Andy Hardy
    MGM's "Andy Hardy" series continued to rake in the bucks with its 12th entry, The Courtship of Andy Hardy. The story takes off when Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone) tackles an unpleasant divorce case. Feeling that the root of the estranged couple's problem is the debilitating shyness of their daughter Melodie (Donna Reed), the Judge asks his son Andy (Mickey Rooney) to help the girl become more popular with her contemporaries. At first balking at the assignment, Andy agrees to instruct Melodie in the social graces at Carvel High School. As a result, Melodie falls in love with Andy, which causes a major personality transformation in him. One of the more treacly "Andy Hardy" episodes, The Courtship of Andy Hardy coasts along on the charm of its young stars. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    The Hardys Ride High
    The fifth of MGM's "Andy Hardy" series, The Hardys Ride High finds the Hardy family outside their usual small-town environs. The complacently middle-class family (middle class by Hollywood standards, that is!) inherits a large estate, compelling them to move in different social circles. Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone) keeps his head about him, while impressionable son Andy (Mickey Rooney) is seduced by the pleasures and privileges of the rich. But reality sets in when the cost of maintaining the estate exceeds the Hardy bank account. The Hardys Ride High is highlighted by the performance of Sara Haden as Aunt Millie, who discovers to her chagrin that her wealthy gentleman caller has no intentions of marrying her. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Love Laughs at Andy Hardy
    For his first post-WWII starring film, 26-year-old Mickey Rooney returned to familiar territory in Love Laughs at Andy Hardy. In true Art-Imitates-Life fashion, Rooney plays returning GI Andy Hardy, who arrives in his home town of Carvel to the open arms of his family: Father Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone), mother Mrs. Hardy (Fay Holden) and Aunt Milly (Sara Haden). After reels and reels of "Gee, Mom and Dad, it's great to be home", Andy launches into a new romance with college coed Kay Wilson (Bonita Granville). His boundless ebullience is dampened when Kay elects to marry another, setting the stage for a another of those man-to-man talks between Judge Hardy and Son. Fortunately, Andy bounces back to his old self when he meets Latin American exchange student Isobel Gonzales (Lina Romay). Wisely, MGM decided that Mickey Rooney was too old to continue to play Andy Hardy, and the studio dropped the series with this entry (there would be a so-so "reunion" picture, Andy Hardy Comes Home, in 1958). If it seems nowadays as though Love Laughs at Andy Hardy is being telecast at least seven times per week, it may be because the film lapsed into public domain in 1974. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Judge Hardy's Children
    The Hardys are off to Washington DC in this third entry in MGM's "Hardy Family" series. Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone) has been appointed chairman of a special committee, and on occasion offers a subtly "liberal" political observation that the writers have slipped by MGM's ultra-conservative head man Louis B. Mayer. The Judge's daughter Marian (Cecilia Parker) is intoxicated by Washington's social life, while son Andy (Mickey Rooney) falls for a pretty daughter of a French diplomat. Thus, the Judge is obliged to juggle his committee duties with his efforts to keep his children from making fools of themselves. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    A Family Affair
    Based on Aurania Rouveyrol's Broadway play Skidding, A Family Affair is a gentle comedy/drama centering around the Hardy family of Carvel (a small, idealized American town). Judge Hardy (Lionel Barrymore) hopes to be re-elected, but his campaign is put in jeopardy by his opposition of a wasteful public works program. The Judge's position is also threatened by his daughter's (Julie Haydon) unexplained separation from her husband. In the supporting cast, incidental to the plotline, was Mickey Rooney as Judge Hardy's teenage son Andy, Spring Byington as the Judge's wife, and Cecilia Parker as his younger daughter Marian. MGM head Louis B. Mayer sensed series potential in A Family Affair, and the result was the long-running and profitable "Hardy Family" series. Julie Haydon's character was written out of all subsequent "Hardy" films, Lewis Stone and Fay Holden replaced Lionel Barrymore and Spring Byington as Judge and Mrs. Hardy, and Mickey Rooney was elevated from the supporting cast to full leading man status as the effervescent Andy Hardy. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

    Andy Hardy's Double Life
    Incredible as it may seem, rambunctious 18-year-old Andy Hardy (Mickey Rooney) finally makes it to college in Andy Hardy's Double Life. Just as he did at Carvel High School, Andy majors in "girls" at college, at one point finding himself engaged simultaneously to two different coeds. On a more serious note, Andy has his first major row with his father Judge Hardy (Lewis Stone) over such vital matters as money and poor grades. But in keeping with the "honor thy parents" edicts of MGM head-man Louis B. Mayer, the plot manages to reunite father and son in the final footage, with Andy respectfully bowing to the wisdom of the good gray judge. Much of Andy Hardy's Double Life is a showcase for MGM's new swimming star Esther Williams, as cute as all get out in a two-piece bathing suit. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

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