Watch Meet Me in St. Louis
- 1 hr 52 min
Meet Me in St. Louis is a classic Hollywood musical from 1944 that follows the lives of the Smith family as they prepare to move from their beloved St. Louis, Missouri to New York City in the summer of 1903. Directed by Vincente Minnelli, the film stars the incomparable Judy Garland as the family's eldest daughter, Esther, alongside Margaret O'Brien as her younger sister, Tootie, and Mary Astor as their mother, Anna.
Set against the backdrop of the 1904 World's Fair, Meet Me in St. Louis is a nostalgic celebration of turn-of-the-century America, complete with period costumes and sets, lively dance numbers, and a memorable score featuring songs like "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," "The Trolley Song," and "The Boy Next Door." The film's plot is episodic in nature, chronicling the family's experiences over the course of several months as they grapple with the prospect of leaving their hometown and the romantic entanglements that ensue.
At the center of the story is Esther, a headstrong young woman who dreams of falling in love and getting married. When John Truett (Tom Drake), the boy next door, returns home from college, Esther is thrilled to discover that he has feelings for her too. However, their happiness is threatened by the looming move to New York and Esther's fear that she will never see him again.
Meanwhile, Tootie, Esther's mischievous younger sister, is causing havoc around town with her wild imagination and penchant for pranks. Whether she's terrifying the neighbors with horrific stories about the mysterious "Lonelyhearts Killer" or staging a dramatic funeral for a dead doll, Tootie is a scene-stealer who provides much of the film's comic relief.
Other notable characters include Rose (Lucille Bremer), the Smiths' flirtatious older daughter, who is determined to find a wealthy husband in order to escape the dreary prospects of small-town life, and Alonzo Smith (Leon Ames), the family's stern but loving patriarch, who struggles to keep his daughters in line while also coming to terms with the reality of their impending move.
Despite its somewhat episodic structure, Meet Me in St. Louis is a charming and engaging film that captures both the beauty and the melancholy of a bygone era. Garland is radiant as Esther, infusing her with both a fiery spirit and a vulnerable sweetness, while O'Brien steals the show with her spunky performance as Tootie. The film's musical numbers are energetic and infectious, and the period detail is impeccable, from the elaborate costumes to the lovingly recreated World's Fair.
Overall, Meet Me in St. Louis is a must-see for fans of classic Hollywood musicals and anyone who appreciates a well-crafted, heartwarming story about love, family, and the passage of time.
Meet Me in St. Louis is a 1944 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 52 minutes. It has received outstanding reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.5 and a MetaScore of 94.