Watch Best Foot Forward
- 1 hr 34 min
Best Foot Forward is a fun and uplifting musical comedy that tells the story of a group of teenagers who are selected to appear on a national radio show. The film was directed by Edward Buzzell and released in 1943. It stars Lucille Ball as Miss Peterson, the strict but caring teacher who accompanies the talented youngsters on their journey. William Gaxton plays the show's host, Tommy, while Virginia Weidler is hilarious as the mischievous and wise-cracking student, "Teddy."
The story begins as the students of Winsocki High School in Trenton, New Jersey receive exciting news: they have been selected to appear on a prestigious radio show in New York City. The students are thrilled, but their excitement quickly turns to anxiety when they learn that the radio show is being broadcast live. Adding to the pressure is the fact that their performance will be judged by a panel of experts from the entertainment industry.
The students are a diverse group, each with their own talents and quirks. There's Connie (Gloria de Haven), a talented singer who dreams of making it big on Broadway; Bud (Tommy Dix), a handsome football player who is also an accomplished dancer; and Peggy (Jeannie Cagney), a sweet and innocent girl who is hopelessly in love with Bud. The group's leader is Tommy, a charismatic and smooth-talking radio host who helps guide the students through the challenges of their big moment.
The plot of the film revolves around the students' efforts to prepare for the radio show. They spend countless hours rehearsing their dance routines, perfecting their singing voices, and honing their comedic timing. Along the way, they encounter plenty of setbacks and obstacles, but they also learn valuable lessons about teamwork, perseverance, and the importance of believing in oneself.
One of the highlights of the film is the musical numbers, which range from toe-tapping swing tunes to beautiful ballads. The standout performance is undoubtedly Lucille Ball's rendition of "Buckle Down, Winsocki," a catchy and upbeat song that has become a classic of the musical genre. Ball's energetic performance and infectious enthusiasm make it clear why she was destined for stardom.
The other musical numbers are just as entertaining, though they often provide an opportunity for the young stars to showcase their individual talents. Gloria de Haven's rendition of "The Three B's" is a showstopper, while Jeannie Cagney's sweet voice is on full display in "The Fellow I Want." Other standout musical numbers include "The Varsity Drag," "Shoo-Shoo Baby," and "You're Lucky."
In addition to the music, Best Foot Forward also has plenty of comedic moments, thanks in large part to Virginia Weidler's scene-stealing performance. As Teddy, Weidler delivers clever one-liners and hilarious quips that keep the audience laughing throughout the film. Whether she's teasing a boy she likes or tricking her friends, Teddy is always up to something mischievous.
Throughout the film, the students face a number of challenges and setbacks, including a near-disaster at the radio studio and a last-minute change to their routine. But through it all, they stick together and support each other, proving that teamwork and perseverance can overcome even the toughest obstacles. By the time the final credits roll, the audience is left feeling uplifted, inspired, and thoroughly entertained.
Overall, Best Foot Forward is a delightful and charming musical comedy that has become a beloved classic of the genre. With its catchy tunes, lively dance numbers, and endearing cast of characters, it is a must-see for anyone who loves feel-good entertainment. And with Lucille Ball at the top of her game, it's easy to see why the film has stood the test of time and remains a beloved favorite among audiences of all ages.
Best Foot Forward is a 1943 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 34 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.4.