State Fair (1962) - Rotten Tomatoes

State Fair (1962)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This is the third time around for the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical. The action takes place in urban Texas instead of the traditional setting in rural Iowa. This film version contains five extra songs written exclusively by Richard Rodgers. Box office results were adequate at best, and movie going public deemed this version the least interesting of the three. The youth audience was lured by the casting of Ann-Margaret, Pat Boone and Bobby Darin. Alice Faye returned to the big screen after a sixteen year absence as Melissa Frake. Tom Ewell plays her husband, Abel. The plot finds a family traveling to Dallas for the Texas State Fair. Singing commences on the ferris wheel, the merry-go-round and in other locales. The only real action is the anticipation of a drag race between Wayne (Pat Boone) and the carrot topped, malevolent motorhead Red (Edward "Tap" Canutt).
Classics , Musical & Performing Arts
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
20th Century Fox Film Corporation


Pat Boone
as Wayne Frake
as Emily Porter
Bobby Darin
as Jerry Dundee
Alice Faye
as Melissa Frake
Pamela Tiffin
as Margie Frake
Tom Ewell
as Able Frake
Wally Cox
as Hipplewaite
Clem Harvey
as Doc Cramer
Robert Foulk
as Squat Judge
Edward "Tap" Canutt
as Red Hoerier
Linda Henrich
as Betty Jean
Bebe Allan
as Usherette
Bebe Allen
as Usherette
George Russell
as George Hoffer
Anton Arnold
as Lackey
Edwin McClure
as Announcer
Walter Beilbey
as Swine Judge
Tom Loughney
as Dick Burdick
Tony Zoppi
as The Masher
Mary Durant
as Woman Judge
Sheila Mathews
as Hipplewaite's Girl
Linda Heinrich
as Betty Jean
Meat Loaf
as Boy In Stands
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for State Fair

All Critics (7)

At least kind of fun in a zero-aspiring, Pat Boone sort of way.

Full Review… | February 11, 2007
Film Freak Central

Try the 1945 if you have to have a musical. Otherwise, try the 1933 Will Rogers picture

October 2, 2002
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Palid remake of two great films, but Ann-Margret is vavoom enough for three stars.

July 25, 2002
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies

Audience Reviews for State Fair


The acting was deplorable, even for 1962 standards. The 1962 version of the Rogers & Hammerstein musical is one of the absolute worst musicals I've ever seen. This is especially true when one compares it to the innocence that was the original film. What sticks out the most about this film is the acting. I really am hard pressed to find acting this bad in film. Whereas in the original film I could tell that the actors were having a lot of fun with the material, I never got that feeling while watching this movie. The audience can only have as much fun as the actors and at times that can make up for a lot of faults (I look at the original film or movie like Rocky Horror Picture Show or Twister as examples of this). But in this film, I wasn't sure if they were trying too hard or not hard enough, but it just was not working from the word "go." How about the songs, potentially the most important part of any musical? They were not staged well at all. A turn-off for me when it comes to musicals happens when a majority of the songs happen with the characters just standing there singing. That's not exciting. That's not even mildly interesting. It's dull. It's not stimulating and it doesn't help matters when the characters are about as lifeless as wet cement. Characters should be fun to watch. Good characters should make the audience want to keep seeing the film no matter what happens. Good characters are what movies are all about. We should root for them and want them to succeed or love to hate them. Anything. The three biggest things that can go wrong with characters are that either they are stock characters, dull or lifeless characters, or characters with unintentionally bad personalities. This remake of State Fair has all three. They took the original charming characters and turned them into unlikable dullards. Our lead female is suppose to fall in love with a "charming" tv personality, but the character comes off as rude, obnoxious, pretentious, and fairly overbearing. How is an audience suppose to be invested in a love story when the female is a bore to watch and the male has all the charm of a screaming child in a tar pit? Love stories only really work when the audience falls in love with the characters who are falling in love. I guess I need not say it, but that doesn't happen here. On top of all that, I noticed that the updated version decided to sell its film with sex. Oh, not outright, you understand. The sex is snuck in there with hinting and risqué dance sequences by the (really attractive) female love interest. This was still done at a time when sex in film was heavily frowned upon, but the fast cars, alcohol-related humor, and burlesque-style dance sequence give an idea of the new target audiences the filmmakers were expecting to gain with the film's "updates." So, no, I did not like the remake of State Fair. In fact, it makes me appreciate the innocence and charm of the original film even more. I would even go on to say that I hated this film, which is quite unfortunate, considering the original's charming qualities. 3/10

Forrest P
Forrest P


James Higgins
James Higgins

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