Happy Go Lovely
Comedy, Musical, Romance | 97 Mins | Released: 1951
Director: H Bruce Humberstone
Starring: Vera-Ellen, David Niven, Cesar Ramero, Bobby Howes, Diane Hart, Gordon Jackson, Barbara Couper
Our Rating: 6
When chorus girl Janet Jones is late for rehearsal in Edinburgh, Bates, the chauffeur for B. G. Bruno, gives her a ride in Bruno’s limousine, starting rumours that she is engaged to the wealthiest man in Scotland. American producer Jack Frost, her employer, has just had the star of his next show, Frolics to You, walk out on him because of his desperate financial situation. He replaces her with Janet, hoping that Bruno will back his revue (or at least that he can use Bruno’s reputation to fend off impatient creditors). Her dressmaker, Madame Amanda, gives her more clothes (and sends the bill to Bruno). Janet’s roommate, Mae Thompson, convinces her to continue the deception.
When Bruno receives the bill, he goes to the theatre to investigate. Janet mistakes him for reporter Paul Tracy, who was supposed to interview her. Finding Janet very attractive, Bruno does not correct her error. The two fall in love. Bruno amuses himself by continually asking Janet about her relationship with the millionaire.
Finally, Bruno gives Frost a check for £10,000. When Janet finds out, however, she confesses everything. On the opening night of Frolics to You, Bruno takes a box seat. Frost summons the police to have him arrested. Janet tries to make “Paul Tracy” hide or leave, in between performing on stage. During these hectic proceedings, Janet blurts out that she loves him. The police catch Bruno, but the inspector in charge recognizes him, much to Janet and Frost’s shock, and all ends well.
In Edinburgh, Scotland, beleaguered American theatrical producer Jack Frost convinces his creditors to give him two more days in which to come up with some money to pay for his latest show, Frolics to You . Because of Jack’s financial woes, the show’s star then quits in disgust. The next morning, broke chorus girl Janet Jones hitchhikes to the theater and is picked up by a friendly chauffeur named Bates. Racing to get Janet to her rehearsal on time, Bates is stopped by the police, and Janet arrives late. Jack argues with Janet and fires her. Unknown to Janet, Bates works for greeting card magnate B. G. Bruno, the richest man in Scotland, and when Bates returns to the theater with her forgotten purse, rumors begin to circulate that Janet is Bruno’s fiancée. Seeing an opportunity, Jack rehires the stunned Janet and gives her the starring role. Later at her boardinghouse, Janet is further surprised when French dressmaker Madame Amanda, who previously had been hounding her to pay an outstanding bill, presents her with some expensive clothes. Janet’s roommate and fellow chorine, Mae Thompson, then berates her for not telling her about Bruno, and Janet finally deduces Jack’s mistake. Sure that Bruno will never find out, Mae convinces Janet to continue the ruse until the show opens. The next day, however, Bruno, a conservative bachelor, receives Madame Amanda’s bill and determines to investigate the matter himself. At the theater, Janet mistakes Bruno for Paul Tracy, a reporter who is scheduled to interview her but has not yet arrived, and bemused by the charming American, Bruno does not correct her. When Bruno questions Janet about “B. G.,” she concocts some innocuous tales about her friendship with the millionaire. Attracted to Bruno, Janet agrees to meet him for lunch the next day, but asks him not to print anything about her relationship with B. G. Jack, meanwhile, bombards the real Paul with his own outrageous stories about B. G. and Janet, and Paul hints broadly about the “romance” in his next column. During lunch, Janet angrily confronts Bruno about the column, but he convinces her that someone else wrote the offending passage. Janet then notices Bates’s limousine outside the theater and says a hasty goodbye. Back at his office, Bruno drills Bates about his visit to the theater, and when Bates reveals how he came to meet Janet, Bruno becomes convinced that Janet is not a gold digger. Later, Mae and Janet, who has promised Jack she will bring B. G. to dinner the next night, pore over actors’ photographs, hoping to find someone to impersonate B. G. When Bruno appears with flowers for Janet, the women conclude that he would make a perfect B. G., and persuade him to play the part. Filled with Janet and Mae’s tips on how to act like a proper millionaire, Bruno accompanies Janet to the fancy restaurant where Jack’s creditors are anxiously waiting to meet B. G. Despite his simple ways, Bruno convinces Jack and his creditors that he is B. G. and is considering investing in the show. After dinner, Janet reveals her love to Bruno and admits that she does not know B. G. The next morning, an ecstatic Bruno writes Jack a check for 10,000 pounds. Janet sees Bruno at the theater and, deducing his mission, confesses her ruse to Jack and informs him that Bruno’s check is phony. Jack demands Bruno’s arrest, and when an unsuspecting Bruno appears for opening night, he is chased by the police. While Janet hides him, Bruno tries to convince her that he really is B. G., but she refuses to believe him. After Bruno finally is caught, however, one of the officers identifies him as B. G. Much relieved, Jack retrieves Bruno’s check, while Bruno and Janet enjoy a long kiss.