Calamity Jane (1953) - Rotten Tomatoes

Calamity Jane (1953)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Doris Day looks no more like the real Calamity Jane than you or I do, but this 1953 film is intended as a lighthearted musical, not a historical tract. As portrayed by the freckled Ms. Day, Jane is a rootin', tootin' shootin' hoyden in the western town of Deadwood. When she isn't tearing up the town, Jane spends her time cussing out Wild Bill Hickok (Howard Keel). The plot gets under way when Jane promises the citizens of Deadwood that she can persuade classy Chicago stage star Adelaide Adams (Gale Robbins) to perform at the local opry house. Through a case of mistaken identity, Jane brings Adelaide's maid Katie (Allyn Ann McLerie) back to town. Katie proves to be a success all the same, and out of gratitude promises to make a "lady" out of Jane, who is sweet on handsome Lt. Gilmartin (Philip Carey). When the lieutenant chooses Katie over Jane, our heroine is heartbroken--until she realizes that she has loved Wild Bill Hickok all along, and that the feeling is mutual so far as Hickok is concerned. The peppy musical score by Sammy Fain and Paul Francis Webster includes the Oscar-winning Secret Love, which became a million-selling hit for Doris Day.
Classics , Comedy , Musical & Performing Arts , Western , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
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Doris Day
as Calamity Jane
Howard Keel
as Wild Bill Hickok
Allyn Ann McLerie
as Katie Brown
Dick Wesson
as Francis Fryer
Philip Carey
as Danny Gilmartin
Paul Harvey
as Henry Miller
Chubby Johnson
as Rattlesnake
Gale Robbins
as Adelaide Adams
Dick Wessel
as Francis Fryer
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Calamity Jane

All Critics (17) | Top Critics (2)

Doris Day works very, very hard at being Calamity and is hardly realistic at all.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

A shrill and preposterous musical Western.

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Boisterous fun, with Day's performance - as the song goes - as busy as a fizzy sarsaparilla.

Full Review… | April 10, 2016
Observer (UK)

Even if the screenwriters were obviously inspired by the mega-success of Annie Get Your Gun, that doesn't make this funny, rambunctious entertainment a mere rip-off.

Full Review… | April 8, 2016
TV Guide

The opening sequence of this wonderful musical is pure pleasure, as Doris Day rides the Deadwood stage across the screen and into our hearts.

Full Review… | April 8, 2016
Radio Times

A must for Doris Day fans -- she gives a rousing, no-holds barred performance that is unquestionably the making of the film.

Full Review… | April 8, 2016

Audience Reviews for Calamity Jane

Why yes, as a matter of fact, I do know this film's entire script by heart. Doris Day has said it was her favorite movie to film, and you'll see why. She plays a tomboy at a time when tomboys simply weren't around. Sure, she finally "sees the light" and becomes feminine toward the end, but this is simply an all-around fun musical with fabulous songs and characters. And I suppose it doesn't hurt that Howard Keel's portrayal of Bill Hickok is hubba hubba

Amelia Bedelia
Amelia Bedelia

Doris Day is on a role with this role. The songs, oh the songs. Howard Keel... The old west. The humour. The fun. The action. Oh how I love this film!

Sarah Burton
Sarah Burton

Super Reviewer


rootin tootin and rambunctious

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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