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Mercer;Johnny This Dreams on

Bill Charlap , Julie Andrews , Bruce Ricker    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mercer songs Feb. 22 2011
Format:DVD
This is an excellent documentary about Johnny Mercer's life. If you didn't know already, you will be amazed at how many fabulous songs he wrote.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  28 reviews
73 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DON'T TELL ME HE WROTE THAT, TOO! Nov. 5 2009
By Jefferbelle - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
We sat watching the documentary on Turner Classic Movies: "The Dream's On Me." The "dreamer" was Johnny Mercer, the songwriter whose name has cropped up time and time again in my life whenever I found a song I really loved.

We sat there, stunned to realize how much a part of our lives this Southern gentleman had been. "Did he write THAT!" "My gosh! Was THAT his too?" "Wow! I learned 'Jeepers creepers' in the fourth grade!"

"Lazybones" and "Day In and Day Out," "I'm An Old Cowhand from the Rio Grande" and "That Old Black Magic"--all by the same writer? "Come Rain or Come Shine" and "Autumn Leaves"?

The documentary features great clips by the best singers of the 20th century, vocalizing or playing with Mercer or while he listens: Bing Crosby, the Mills Brothers, Andy Williams, Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Fred Astaire, Judy Garland (found out something about her we didn't know!), Tony Bennett, Nat "King" Cole--on and on.

The documentary follows Mercer's career into the Seventies, when music trends changed and his kind of ballad passed from popularity, and when I no longer learned the words of dozens of songs. More than any other lyricist in the world, Johnny Mercer was the man who gave my generation its love songs. What a debt we owe him! His tombstone uses yet another of his unforgettable phrases: "And the Angels Sing." Indeed they did.
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What talent! Nov. 8 2009
By CJS - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent look at the career of the greatest lyricist of all time - Johnny Mercer. His songs are so much a part of American life from Hooray for Hollywood, You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby, Jeepers Creepers, One for My Baby and One for the Road, Laura, Autumn Leaves, Glow Worm, Moon River, and Days of Wine and Roses - to name just a few. He had a way with words that no other lyricist has been able to repeat. This documentary contains numerous clips of Mercer - who had a great voice - along with other greats such as Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and so many others. You get a good look at Mercer's career. My only criticism is I would have liked to have known what happened to his wife and son. Like so many biographies, it did not tie up the loose ends of those important in his life but I would still highly recommend it.
26 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ating Mr Mercer .. and nicely done too!! Nov. 6 2009
By J. Bryce - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Clint Eastwood gives us a loving and carefully produced look at one the true musical geniuses of the 20th Century. This is as much a celebration of Johnny Mercer's life and music as it is a biography. It plays out like a catalogue of all the great songs, performers and writers that we grew up with. Mr Mercer seems to have had some involvement in virtually every facet of "The Great American Songbook" and he excelled in all of them. Most of all this is an enormously enjoyable and entertaining 2 hours that I could watch over and over again. That's what makes this DVD worth buying. You'll want to take it off the shelf and play it regularly.
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Despite Some Flaws, This DVD Is Just Too Marvelous For Words Dec 23 2009
By Howard Wexler - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
As someone who developed an appreciation of Johnny Mercer via the Philip Furia book "Skylark" (why is it so unavailable), this is simply marvelous.

Just a short list of the lyrics Mercer wrote brings up some of the greatest songs ever, Moon River, I'll Remember You, Too Marvelous For Words, Emily, One For My Baby, I Wanna Be Around, Dream, That Old Black Magic.

There are flaws as mentioned by others. The Lena Horne clips are unwatchable, the mugging she does is pathetic. So little Sinatra, Judy Garland or Ella Fitzgerald. Way too much Andy Williams.

But some of the clips are astonishing. There are three clips from a Merv Griffin show with Fred Astaire, Tony Bennett, Pearl Bailey, and Dinah Shore that are jaw-dropping. If that entire show exists in some archive, can someone make it available to the general public. Hearing Mercer and Astaire singing "Something's Gotta Give" on that show knocked me off my chair.

I was also amazed at how good Mercer was as a singer. The clips with him singing solo or with others are fascinating. There is a non-Mercer song clip in the show, him singing Carmichael's "Georgia On My Mind" with Ray Charles.

I also appreciated that the documentary did not gloss over some of the sadder facets of Mercer's life, that his marriage that went bad, his affair with Judy Garland, his drinking problem (he was a very bad drinker, probably an alcoholic).

One point that was not mentioned that was in the Furia book, that Mercer would write multiple versions of lyrics to a song. It would have been interesting to have someone sing the alternate lyrics he wrote for Moon River.

It is great to watch this on TCM, better to have it on DVD.

Thank you TCM, thank you Clint Eastwood, thank you Johnny Mercer.
19 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TCM Does It Again! Nov. 13 2009
By G. Misthos - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
With all the crap and garbage on TV these days, thank God for Turner Classic Movies. They have done it again, with a splendid documentary on the underrated (my opinion) and great song writer, Johnny Mercer. He wrote an astonishing number of great songs, a few where he wrote the music and lyrics by himself, but mostly writing the lyrics and working with many melody writers, including Harold Arlen, Harry Warren, Richard Whiting, and later, Henry Mancini.
There are some wonderful clips of Johnny with Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong, Fred Astaire, and many others, and lots of clips of singers perfroming his songs. Two minor complaints: There was only a brief clip of Sinatra, singing "One For My Baby"--should have had more of him. And they chose to show a simply dreadful rendition of "Day in-Day Out", "sung" by Lena Horne--couldn't they have shown one of Sinatra's versions?
That aside, this is an entertaining and informative documentary that lovers of great music will enjoy very much. I highly recommend it.
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