Watch The Music Man
- 2 hr 31 min
The Music Man is a 1962 musical comedy film directed by Morton DaCosta and based on the Broadway musical of the same name by Meredith Willson. The film stars Robert Preston, Shirley Jones, and Buddy Hackett. The story takes place in the small town of River City, Iowa, in 1912. Robert Preston plays Harold Hill, a traveling salesman and con artist who poses as a music professor and convinces the townspeople to form a boys' band. He plans to skip town with the money and leave the townspeople without a band. Shirley Jones plays Marian Paroo, the town librarian and piano teacher who is initially skeptical of Hill's schemes. However, Hill eventually wins her over and they fall in love. Hill's plan seems to be going smoothly at first, as he convinces the parents of the town to buy instruments and uniforms for their children. He also convinces them to keep the band a secret from their school board, who he claims are against music education. However, trouble soon arises when Marian's younger brother, Winthrop, develops a speech impediment and Hill helps him overcome it. As a result, Marian becomes suspicious of Hill and his intentions. Meanwhile, the town's mayor and the school board begin to question Hill's credentials and start to investigate. Hill's friend, Marcellus Washburn (played by Buddy Hackett), warns Hill that the town is onto him and they need to leave immediately. Despite the challenges, Hill persists and manages to put together a successful band, with Winthrop as the star trumpet player. However, his plans are eventually foiled and he is caught by the townspeople. The film ends with Hill and Marian reconciling and Hill deciding to stay in River City and become a music teacher for real. The Music Man is known for its catchy songs, including "Seventy-Six Trombones" and "Till There Was You," and for Robert Preston's memorable performance as Harold Hill. The film was a critical and commercial success, earning Preston a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy and winning an Oscar for Best Music, Scoring of Music, Adaptation or Treatment. Overall, The Music Man is a lighthearted and entertaining musical comedy with memorable characters and songs.