“Carefree” is a delightfully naive and adorable classic, with a silly story but wonderful dance numbers of the constant pair Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Ginger “steals” the film not only dancing, but also with a funny performance.
A little short on songs, but Astaire and Rogers are in top form
The first Astaire-Rogers vehicle to actually lose money on first release ($68,000, a mere drop in the bucket, but still…) and there’s a good reason why. Only four songs and dance numbers, including a solo for Fred. Nonetheless, although the accent definitely veers toward story rather than song, it’s an interesting and amusing vehicle in which Ginger and Fred not only acquit themselves most ably (Ginger looks great in her Howard Greer costumes) but are supported by a first-rate group of players headed by old friends like eager Jack Carson and irascible Clarence Kolb plus a charming comedian in Luella Gear. Character spots are filled by well-known faces like Edward Gargan as the cop with the nightstick, Franklin Pangborn as a fussy little skeet judge, and Walter Kingsford in his customary role as a doctor. Director Mark Sandrich can be spotted as the golf caddy in the first shot at the country club with Fred and Finlayson.