STATE FAIR


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State Fair is a 1945 musical starring Jeanne Crain, Dana Andrews, Fay Bainter, and Dick Haymes. The original music by Rodgers and Hammerstein includes popular songs such as “It’s A Grand Night for Singing” and “It Might as Well Be Spring.” The last of which won the Academy Award for Best Song.

It is the story of a farm family, the Frakes, who look forward every year to the Iowa state fair where they can mingle with the more worldy folk who come from all over to compete for the best in cooking and livestock among other contests.

The daughter Margy (Jeanne Crain) longs for something more than her humdrum life on the farm. She encounters romance with handsome stranger Pat (Dana Andrews), a reporter covering the fair and who she meets on a roller coaster. They spend the day together. The mother played by Fay Bainter is intent on winning the cooking contest with her mincemeat.  Her husband Abel  (Charles Winninger), thinks the mincemeat needs a little something and adds brandy to it, unbeknownst to Mrs. Frakes. The judges like her mincemeat and keep sampling it making them very tipsy. They agree it’s a winner and give her a special award. 

The father, Abel thinks that his pig Blue Boy will win a livestock prize and bets that he will. Dick Haymes is the brother Wayne whose girlfriend cannot go to the fair. He meets a girl there played by Vivian Blaine.

Margy and Pat fall in love and he asks her to marry him. Even though they are quite different, she accepts.

The movie was later remade in the 60s with Pat Boone and Ann Margret. But the original is still the best version. It is good wholesome family fare everyone can watch.

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