6.9/10
4,196
57 user 16 critic

Show Boat (1951)

Approved | | Drama, Family, Musical | 24 September 1951 (USA)
The daughter of a riverboat captain falls in love with a charming gambler, but their fairytale romance is threatened when his luck turns sour.

Director:

George Sidney

Writers:

John Lee Mahin (screen play), Jerome Kern (based on the immortal musical play "Show Boat" by) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In the year leading up to the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair, the four Smith daughters learn lessons of life and love, even as they prepare for a reluctant move to New York.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Judy Garland, Margaret O'Brien, Mary Astor
Biography | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Young and inexperienced Sister Ann has just arrived at her next posting at Samaritan House, a Dominican order located in a disreputable neighborhood of Ghent, Belgium. Sister Ann is ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Debbie Reynolds, Ricardo Montalban, Greer Garson
Family | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A reluctantly retired vaudevillian clashes with his producer son who thinks his father's entertainment is passe and audiences need something more sophisticated. Meanwhile the producer's father and sister secretly produce their own show.

Director: Roy Del Ruth
Stars: George Murphy, Ginny Simms, Charles Winninger
The Music Man (1962)
Comedy | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Harold Hill poses as a boys' band leader to con naive Iowa townsfolk.

Director: Morton DaCosta
Stars: Robert Preston, Shirley Jones, Buddy Hackett
Adventure | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The daughter of a wealthy businessman becomes lost in the city while traveling to a new school, and is taken in by a pair of down-on-their-luck performers.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Shirley Temple, Alice Faye, Gloria Stuart
Documentary | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Various MGM stars from yesterday present their favourite musical moments from the studio's 50 year history.

Director: Jack Haley Jr.
Stars: Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Bing Crosby
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

"Cheaper By the Dozen", based on the real-life story of the Gilbreth family, follows them from Providence, Rhode Island to Montclair, New Jersey, and details the amusing anecdotes found in ... See full summary »

Director: Walter Lang
Stars: Clifton Webb, Myrna Loy, Jeanne Crain
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Rebecca's Uncle Harry leaves her with Aunt Miranda who forbids her to associate with show people. But neighbor Anthony Kent is a talent scout who secretly set it up for her to broadcast.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Shirley Temple, Randolph Scott, Jack Haley
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Family | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A university professor leaves his job to become a theater critic, creating problems with his family and friends.

Director: Charles Walters
Stars: Doris Day, David Niven, Janis Paige
Heidi (1937)
Drama | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A plucky little orphan girl gets dumped abruptly into her gruff, hermit grandfather's care, then later gets retaken and delivered as a companion for an injured girl.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Shirley Temple, Jean Hersholt, Arthur Treacher
Certificate: Passed Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A Norwegian farmer lovingly raises his daughter in rural World War II-era Benson Junction, Wisconsin.

Director: Roy Rowland
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Margaret O'Brien, James Craig
Comedy | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Tom the Piper's Son is about to marry Mary Quite Contrary. On the eve of their wedding, evil miser Barnaby hires two henchmen to drown Tom and steal Mary's sheep, cared for by Little Bo ... See full summary »

Director: Jack Donohue
Stars: Ray Bolger, Tommy Sands, Annette Funicello
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kathryn Grayson ... Magnolia Hawks
Ava Gardner ... Julie LaVerne
Howard Keel ... Gaylord Ravenal
Joe E. Brown ... Cap'n Andy Hawks
Marge Champion ... Ellie May Shipley
Gower Champion ... Frank Schultz
Robert Sterling ... Steven Baker
Agnes Moorehead ... Parthy Hawks
Leif Erickson ... Pete (as Lief Erickson)
William Warfield William Warfield ... Joe
Edit

Storyline

The "Cotton Blossom", owned by the Hawk family, is the show boat where everyone comes for great musical entertainment down south. Julie LaVerne and her husband are the stars of the show. After a snitch on board calls the local police that Julie (who's half- African-American) is married to a white man, they are forced to leave the show boat. The reason being, that down south interracial marriages are forbidden. Magnolia Hawk, Captain Andy Hawks' daughter, becomes the new show boat attraction and her leading man is Gaylord Ravenal, a gambler. The two instantly fall in love, and marry, without Parthy Hawks approval. Magnolia and Gaylord leave the "Cotton Blossom" for a whirl-wind honeymoon and to live in a Pl: fantasy world. Magnolia soon faces reality quickly, that gambling means more to Gaylord than anything else. Magnolia confronts Gaylord and after he gambles away their fortune he leaves her - not knowing she is pregnant. Magnolia is left penniless and pregnant, and is left to fend ... Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Lift your heart with love, music, joy! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 September 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Show Boat See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$2,295,429 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

When preparations for this film version of "Show Boat" were begun as far back as 1944, Walter Huston and Ethel Barrymore were set to play Cap'n Andy and Parthy. Both finally had to back out of the production, and Huston eventually died before the film started shooting. See more »

Goofs

Some of the extras repeat in different settings. Judy Landon, a minor MGM contract player who would later become known as the wife of Brian Keith, can be seen as one of the showboat's chorus girls in the opening number (front and center when the girls sing about the leading man), as well as one of the chorus girls who talks to the director at the nightclub during Magnolia's audition to Can't Help Lovin' That Man of Mine. See more »

Quotes

Cap'n Andy Hawks: (hearing of Magnolia's engagement to Ravenal) Son, I hope it's not Saturday night one minute, with a cold Monday morning to follow. Whatever happens, Nollie, always remember to smile.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Some prints of this film spell Leif Erickson's name the correct way in the opening credits; others spell it as "Lief Erickson". See more »

Alternate Versions

In most 1980's television prints and videocassette releases of the film, we see stills of the Mississippi River during the credits, rather than seeing "moving shots" of it, as in the original theatrical release, later videocassette prints, the DVD, and TV showings. See more »

Connections

Featured in Glorious Technicolor (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Make Believe
(1927) (second reprise) (uncredited)
Music by Jerome Kern
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Sung by Howard Keel
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Take it for what it is..
11 July 2004 | by popnoff2001See all my reviews

Please people! Try not to over-analyze, like so many others have done in the other comments about this fabulous Techno-color classic from the early 1950's Hollywood. It isn't supposed to be a carbon-copy remake of the older 1936 version nor is it supposed to be making any sort of PC statements about race! Times changed and so did the attitudes and views of most americans, especially after WWII. Take it for what it is! A great musical wrapped around a love story. Beautiful lead actress, strong male lead and awesome broadway style tunes sung by great voices, especially William Warfield's "Old man River"!


34 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 57 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed