Film & Water #77 – Singin’ in the Rain



Good mornin', good mornin'! Rob welcomes longtime pal Shawn Myers to talk about the 1952 classic SINGIN' IN THE RAIN starring Gene Kelly, Donald O'Connor, and Debbie Reynolds!

Have a question or comment? Looking for more great content?

Subscribe via iTunes:

This podcast is a proud member of the FIRE AND WATER PODCAST NETWORK:

Thanks for listening! That's A Wrap!

17 responses to “Film & Water #77 – Singin’ in the Rain

  1. So glad to hear you guys discuss this one! We offer a film history class here at BGSU where that consists of a once weekly 4 hr class where we discuss a film and watch it in its entirety. I break the sessions down by genre and “Signin’ in the Rain” was always my musical pick. It never failed to charm the students. I had a friend who used to claim “The Bandwagon” was the superior musical but I don’t think you can beat this one.

    You’re right about the difference between the Kelly and Astaire styles. Gene always seemed like more of the everyman while you Fred seemed to have been born in a tux. One interesting thing is that Kelly usually wore tighter clothes to emphasize his physique and at times his pants were cut a bit short to better feature his feet as he danced,

    Here is Kelly, Reynolds, & O’Connor at the 1986 Oscars:

  2. Quite jealous that I didn’t get to be on this episode. I love this movie, one of those films that every time it is on TMC I DVR and watch it.

    This is one of those movies that my folks introduced to me at an early age. My mother used to sing ‘Good Morning’ outside my bedroom door if I was oversleeping. And they used to twang ‘I cannnnnn’t stannnd him’ like Lena whenever one of us talked about someone we disliked at school. I have subsequently shown this movie to my kids and they love it as well. The plan is to see it on the big screen in a couple of days.

    A couple of thoughts on the show, mostly things I have heard somewhere along the way (so truth may be variable).

    Apparently Donald O’Connor was a chain smoker and was so winded after ‘Make ’em laugh’ that he needed to take a couple of days off.

    I’m surprised ‘Moses Supposes’ wasn’t mentioned in the episode as it is an incredible dance sequence with large segments done in one shot. I am pretty sure that Kelly said that was his favorite dance scene from his filmography. I get tired just watching it.

    You can tell that dance-wise Debbie Reynolds isn’t quite up to snuff with O’Connor and Kelly in “Good Morning’. There are portions where she is standing still while the two guys perform complex dances around her.

    But as you say, it is the humor throughout the movie that holds it together around the song numbers. Hearing Kelly talk about his integrity at the beginning of the movie while we see his vaudeville acts is perfect. And I love when we see the scene of The Dancing Cavalier from the premiere. Kelly tosses his cane and it sounds like a car wreck. And then him saying ‘I love you I love you I love you’ is fantastic.

    Thanks for covering.
    I’ll throw my hat in the musical ring if you ever cover ‘Seven Brides for Seven Brothers’.

    1. I forgot to mention the “Moses” number, my bad. This gets to something of an issue I have with this show, and podcasting in general: I tend to make a list of items I want to to cover, but I have found that when I do I can become a little Robotic in an effort just to get to them all. Then the show stops being a conversation, which is what I want it to be.

      The downside is, of course, if I wing it, I always forget to mention something here or there. I would have been happy to go over every single musical number in this movie, since they are all excellent. Not a bum in the lot.

  3. Great show! I’d really like to catch this on the big screen. Time to see if I can reshuffle things this weekend.
    I’m do for a rewatch for sure. I’m not as familiar with the movie as I’d like, although I grew up with my Mom watching it. But I think EVERYONE knows that famous sequence with Gene Kelly dancing and singing the title song.

    On the last day of our first trip to Walt Disney World in 2012, it started raining. We stood in the downpour to see the 12 O’Clock character parade before we left. As we walked toward the gates, the music on the speakers began to play “Singing in the Rain”. I took that opportunity to swing around a few lamp posts on Main Street USA, while lip-synching the lyrics. A perfect capper to a perfect trip.


    1. Chris-

      Yes, if you can make it to the TCM showing (around here they are Sundays and Wed nights) it’s worth it. This is a big screen movie experience, more than even some of the other films they have shown. The colors pop, the music is immersive, it really works.

  4. I’m ashamed to say that I have yet to see Singin’ in the Rain in its entirety, but I have seen and thoroughly enjoyed the That’s Entertainment! series of films. As much as I like a good sci-fi or action movie, there’s just something about the skill and artistry displayed in a Hollywood musical that I find both impressive and refreshing. That comes in part from the knowledge that such artistry lies well beyond my grasp.

    As a more recent take on this genre, I enjoyed the 2001 movie, Moulin Rouge!. It’s darker and more bizarre than your typical movie musical, but I felt it captured the spirit and spectacle of its predecessors.

  5. It’s funny that Shawn brought up the common complaint about musicals because I said nearly the very same thing the previous night when talking about the upcoming Flash/Supergirl crossover with the Music Meister. Yes, people don’t break into song in real life to express how they are feeling but that’s not the point. The point is that expressing a character’s thoughts and feelings or even advancing the plot through song is just another form of storytelling.

    And honestly I love musicals. Even bad ones. I did a bit of musical theater in junior high and high school and while I am no expert I have a fondness for a number of movies and shows that feature people singing. From Godspell to Hair to Les Mis to Wicked to Pippin to Grease 2 (I prefer the music in Grease 2 to the original and it has a better message) to Shock Treatment (which I prefer to Rocky Horror) to any number of productions. I just love the genre.

    Thanks for making me want to see this, guys. I will get to it sooner rather than later.

  6. Great job chaps, I love this film too. Is it true that, ironically, Jean Hagen, dubbed Debbie Reynolds as Kathy dubbing Lina?

    Did you ever see the incomparable British comics Morecambe & Wise paying tribute to the Singin’ in the Rain number? If this doesn’t work, seek it out!

    I once reviewed a touring version of the show and the lead, a popular, married, ageing UK TV actor, had a reputation for pestering the young girls in the ensemble. The stagehands decided to get revenge. Let’s just say that one night the rain certainly wasn’t tainted with milk…

    And if we’re putting in bids for appearing on musicals episodes, I love Damn Yankees, The Pajama Game, My Sister Eileen (Jack Lemmon and Janet Leigh sing!), The Pirate (a bit pants, but lots to talk about)…

  7. I saw this movie WAY later in life than I probably should have. But honestly I’m not always the best at going back for old movies that I didn’t in some way grow up on.

    For a totally shameless plug, there’s a couple of Singin’ in the Rain jokes in an old Council of Geeks episode, way back when it was a scripted comedy (

  8. Fathom Events and Regal Cinemas own you a kickback, Rob. It was due to this episode, and that fact that this is my absolute favorite musical, that we went Sunday afternoon to see the show. I know we’re going back later in the year as they’ll be showing Smokey & The Bandit (one of my favorite films) and Dirty Dancing (Michelle’s favorite film of all).

    This is one of those few films where everyone is just great, from the three leads right down to the put upon promotions guy who seems in a constant state of panic. I’ve always enjoyed watching Gene Kelly dance for the simple reason that he always seems to be really enjoying himself. Even when he’s supposed to be serious, the smile just creeps it’s way onto his face. I agree that Debbie Reynolds wasn’t at the level of Kelly and O’Connor, but who would expect any 17 year-old to be? They did a good job working around this, but she still did a great job.

    This viewing also has the side-effect of reigniting Kira’s interest in dance, especially when I told her that all of the classes she’s taking now are what they were doing on the screen. 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *