On the DVD
"A Couple of Song and Dance Men" is a 45-minute conversation between author-historian Ken Barnes and Ava Astaire McKenzie, Fred's daughter, recapping the careers of Astaire and Crosby. It's a bit wooden, but not without charm, and has some interesting early footage, chiefly of Crosby (presumably because of studio rights issues). There's also a seven-minute discussion of how sound has been recorded for movie musicals, and specifically how it was done for Holiday Inn's "I'll Capture Her Heart." Barnes's commentary track offers bits of trivia (they had originally wanted Ginger Rogers for one of the roles, and yes, the title inspired the hotel chain) and incorporates some archival quotes by Astaire and Crosby. The remastered picture is a noticeable improvement over the earlier double-feature DVD, which paired Holiday Inn with Crosby's Going My Way. --David Horiuchi
A Couple of Song and Dance Men Featurette; All Singing-All Dancing Featurette ; Audio Commentary with Film Historian Ken Barnes & Archive Audio Comments from Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby and John Scott Trotter; Original Theatrical Trailer.
It's an easy enough plot line: Bing and Fred used to be partnered with a gal engaged to Bing, but she throws him over to be with Fred. Bing, a performer fed up with working so hard, retreats to a farm and eventually dreams up the idea of an inn which is ONLY open on holidays, giving him the rest of the year to loaf around. Aspiring entertainer Marjorie Reynolds shows up on Christmas just on cue to be serenaded with "White Christmas", and things look pretty cozy for them pretty fast. But complications arise when the now-jilted Fred turns up at the inn on New Year's, and the gal chase is on again, but now after Bing's new star/girlfriend. Jealousy plays a few tricks on everyone before every Jack gets the proper Jill by movie's end.
A few of the other reviewers say that the film is marred by the Lincoln's birthday number Bing leads in blackface. While I agree that the segment unfortunately makes the movie one with a limited audience in today's more racially charged atmosphere, I think a bigger problem with the movie is...Bing himself! Yep, I don't think Bing is a very nice fellow in the movie, even though Fred is supposed to be the cad, as one reviewer put it.Read more ›