On an Island with You (1948)





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Movie Info

The title of this MGM musical alone should tip you to the fact that Esther Williams is the star. In this one, she plays a movie star (what an innovation!), Rosalind Reynolds, who is on location in Hawaii to shoot a picture. Peter Lawford plays the film's naval technical advisor, Lt. Lawrence Y. Kingslee, who naturally falls deeply in love with Rosalind. As a means of expressing his ardor, Kingslee genteelly kidnaps Rosalind by "accidentally" marooning her on a desert island. To the dismay of feminists everywhere, Rosalind comes to enjoy being Kingslee's prisoner, and all ends happily. Jimmy Durante breaks up da joint in the role of an assistant director, while music is provided by MGM's all-purpose bandleader Xavier Cugat. The Technicolor process is shown to supreme advantage whenever it concentrates on Esther Williams' form-fitting gold-colored swimsuit. On an Island with You was one of MGM's premiere moneymakers of 1948.
Classics , Comedy , Drama , Musical & Performing Arts
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Warner Home Video

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Jim Dale
as Navigator
Jimmy Durante
as Buckley
Kathryn Beaumont
as Penelope Peabody
Ricardo Montalban
as Ricardo Montez
Leon Ames
as Cmdr. Harrison
Cyd Charisse
as Yvonne Torro
Peter Lawford
as Lt. Lawrence Y. Kingslee
Esther Williams
as Rosalind Reynolds
Cosmo Sardo
as Barber
Richard Simmons
as George Blaine
Lester Dorr
as Photographer
Arthur J. Walsh
as 2nd Assistant Director
Chester Clute
as Tommy the Waiter
Xavier Cugat
as Himself
Dick Simmons
as George Blaine
Nolan Leary
as Cameraman
Dick Winslow
as Bald Radio Operator
James Dale
as Navigator
Franklin Parker
as Lieutenant/Technical Advisor
Carl Leviness
as Desk Clerk
Kay Norton
as Martha the Hairdresser
Nina Ross
as Mrs. Peabody
Betty Reilly
as Vocalist
Sam Tubuo
as Native Chief
Emelia Leovalli
as Grandmother
Uluao Letuli
as Sword Dancer
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Critic Reviews for On an Island with You

All Critics (1)

The lush Technicolor, great swimming numbers and high production values are all this stiff film has going for it.

Full Review… | July 28, 2016
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Absolutely gorgeous to look at, Esther doesn't get to swim too much here, but she looks pretty good in that deep tan and wrap-around sarong, so.... Her leading men are rather glum, and her comedy relief strident, at best.

Full Review… | July 25, 2007

Audience Reviews for On an Island with You


Has some pretty funny moments w/ Jimmy Durante and an amazing dance sequence w/ Ricardo Montalban and Cyd Charisse, but is pretty dull over all. The pacing drags in a lot of places and the songs are forgettable, plus I felt like Ricardo Montalban's character was marginalized to a stereotype by the end of the film.

Jennifer Sewell
Jennifer Sewell

i never even heard of this one before (although i have seen clips previously) and, typical of mgm musicals, it's chock full of misspent talent, talent overflowing, a veritable pool of talent (i make myself laff!). ricardo montalban is incredible, dancing with cyd charisse and swimming with esther flawlessly, the unexpected performance of a lifetime. jimmy durante is in-your-face with making you respect vaudeville, no small feat, and respect it you do after he is done. cyd charisse...is simply timeless perfection of dance. maestro xavier cugat ain't about to be outdone by anybody, and, in such talented company, even peter lawford dutifully turns in a decent showing. all this firepower and for a trifle, a cinnamon roll! zowie! and then, of course, rising from beneath the waves, her arms outstretched, her face beaming a smile as if she were glad to see us home, all of us, sweet mother of god, beaming, is esther herself!

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer


Ok...I have to admit, I like Esther Williams. Why? Although she's no Katharine Hepburn, she actually can act and her movies are always good for lighthearted entertainment, like this one. In addition, stars Peter Lawford, Ricardo Montalban (who shares sensual water ballet scenes with Williams and equally sensual dance scenes with Cyd Charisse), Jimmy Durante, and Cyd Charisse join in for the fun, along with great music from Xavier Cugat. Who could ask for anything more?

Audrey-Kim Hayworth
Audrey-Kim Hayworth

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