Pick a Star (1937) - Rotten Tomatoes

Pick a Star (1937)

Pick a Star

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Film collectors take note: Hal Roach's Pick a Star is not a Laurel and Hardy picture, though the popular comic duo does make a brace of amusing cameo appearances halfway through the film. A remake of Buster Keaton's Free and Easy, this is the story of how small-town gas-station owner Joe Jenkins (Jack Haley) tries to help his sweetheart Cecilia Moore (Rosina Lawrence) realize her ambition to become a movie star. At the behest of travelling entrepreneur Stone (Russell Hicks), Jenkins organizes a talent contest, the first prize being a trip to Hollywood and a screen test. When Stone turns out to be a crook and skips town with the proceeds of the contest, Cecilia is heartbroken, but Joe promises to go to Hollywood himself and make the right connections to assure her rise to stardom. Alas, the best Joe can manage in Tinseltown is a busboy job at the Colonial Club, a fact he tries to conceal from Cecilia and her wisecracking sister Nellie (Patsy Kelly) when they unexpectedly arrive in California as guests of movie-matinee idol Rinaldo Lopez (Mischa Auer). In desperation, Joe pretends to be a nightclub entertainer, but when this ruse is revealed, Cecilia angrily walks out on him, accompanying Rinaldo first to his movie studio and then to his apartment. Naturally Rinaldo has seduction on his mind, but innocent Cecilia doesn't realize this until Joe storms into the apartment with blood in his eye. Ashamed for his lascivious behavior, Rinaldo arranges for Cecilia to have a screen test for producer Klawheimer (Charles Halton). At the last moment, Cecilia suffers an attack of "camera fright," but Joe gently coaches her through her test, and there's a happy ending for all concerned -- even for sister Nellie, who's been relentlessly cynical about the storyline from first scene to last. Cast as "movie stars," Laurel and Hardy show up briefly in the movie-studio scenes to participate in a reciprocal-destruction sequence with their old screen nemesis Walter Long, and to perform an amusing musical routine with "dueling" harmonicas. Pick a Star has been reissued as Movie Struck, while the Laurel & Hardy scenes were released separately to TV as the ersatz two-reeler A Day at the Studio.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Richard Flournoy, Arthur V. Jones, Tom Dugan, Tom Dugan
On DVD: Jan 27, 1993
Runtime:
MGM

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Cast

Rosina Lawrence
as Cecilia Moore
Jack Haley
as Joe Jenkins
Patsy Kelly
as Nellie Moore
Mischa Auer
as Rinaldo Lopez
Stan Laurel
as Himself
Oliver Hardy
as Himself
Charles Halton
as Malheimer
Tom Dugan
as Dimitri Hogan
Russell Hicks
as J. Aubrey Stone
Spencer Charters
as Judge Pike
Sam Adams
as Sheriff
Robert Gleckler
as Nightclub Steward
Joyce Compton
as Ernie's Bride
James Finlayson
as Laurel and Hardy's D...
Walter Long
as Mexican Tough Guy
James C. Morton
as Bartender
Eddie Kane
as Albert Headwaiter
Charles A. Bachman
as Studio Guard
Charles McMurphy
as Studio Guard
Frank O'Connor
as Studio Guard
Charles D. Hall
as Assistants to Finlay...
Ray Cooke
as Assistants to Finlay...
Cully Richards
as Master of Ceremonies
Sam Lufkin
as Mexican hit with a c...
Wesley Barry
as Assistant Director
John Hyams
as Mr. McGregor
Leila McIntyre
as Mrs. McGregor
Otto H. Fries
as Other Judge
Howard Brooks
as Other Judge
Margie Roanberg
as Miss Gopher City
Alice Moore
as Miss Centerville
Mary Blackwell
as Mrs. Apple Valley
Arline Abers
as Miss Mill Creek
May Wallace
as Joe Jenkins' Landlad...
Jack Norton
as Oscar the Souse
Wilma Cox
as Oscar's Wife
Bob 'Mazooka' O'Cono...
as Announcer of Bandits...
Syd Saylor
as Street Sweeper
Cornelius Keefe
as Dress Extra
Sid Saylor
as Street Sweeper
Jack Egan
as Orchestra Conductor
Eddie Hart
as Benny the Chauffeur
Si Jenks
as Old-Timer
Wilbur Mack
as Door Greeter
Mary Gordon
as Undertaker's Wife
Felix Knight
as Nightclub Singer
Patricia Ka
as Nightclub Singer
James Burke
as Detective Nolan
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