Yes Sir, That's My Baby (1949) Poster

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7/10
Donald O'Connor and Gloria DeHaven provide a nice mix of music and comedy in Yes Sir, That's My Baby
tavm19 June 2012
For several months, I've favorited a lot of Donald O'Connor movies on YouTube that, as far as I know, aren't available on either old VHS tapes or on current DVD's. Now I finally took the time to watch one of them. In this one, Donald is one of several former G.I.s now in college-who are also new dads-who's also on the football team...well, he would be if his wife Gloria DeHaven, also a student, would let him. It seems his coach played by Charles Coburn, who also teaches biology there, had once a relationship with the female instructor of Ms. DeHaven, Barbara Brown, that didn't end well. Their animosity is what has caused the wives of the other former G.I.s to also put their foot down, so to speak. But you know where there's a will there's a way...Plenty of funny stuff concerning babies and other domestic mishaps occur but of course with both O'Connor and DeHaven on board there's also singing and dancing. Donald, in fact, has a fine tap dancing number at the laundromat. By the way, the reason that I watched this now is because since I'm reviewing members of the original "Dallas" cast in previous movies and TV shows in chronological order, this was next on the list since Jim "Jock Ewing" Davis is among the G.I. football players. So on that note, Yes Sir, That's My Baby gets a recommendation.
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4/10
80 Minutes of Baby Talk.
mark.waltz13 May 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Sweet to the point of risking a cavity, this well-meaning family musical surrounds several war veterans in college on the G.I. bill who engage in the battle of the sexes with their wives over household chores, taking care of the baby and being part of the football team. Donald O'Connor and Gloria DeHaven play the lead couple, parents of a sweet little tot nicknamed Boobikins. If you can stomach the rest of the football player dads with similarly nicknamed tots, a few rather overly "cute" songs and a genuine battle of the sexes lead by science professor/football coach Charles Coburn and his rival, professor Barbara Brown, you'll find this harmless fun. It just gets to be a bit too much, and it is difficult to see things from the female perspective when it all seems to be their way or no way. O'Connor gets a few athletic dances and is quite remarkable in them, but is defeated by a script that seems to have been written by a novice who wanted to write something "meaningful" but ended up with something cloying and sometimes cringe-worthy.
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7/10
Decent gridiron 'battle of the sexes' musical comedy
weezeralfalfa17 January 2013
Warning: Spoilers
It was 1949, and with the post-war baby boom underway, babies occasionally were the focus of the melodrama in musical comedies. This Universal low budget Technicolor film is a prime example. Fox's "My Blue Heaven", starring Betty Grable and Dan Dailey, released the following year, was another. The story is pretty goofy and predictable, and sometimes slow paced, with a couple of songs by stars Donald O'Connor or Gloria DeHaven, and one memorable song and dance by Don. In part, it's one of those sports films where the sport hero(Don in this case) is prevented from playing most of a key game, and is finally released onto the field to engineer a 'miracle' comeback win. Quite predictable. However, this segment is interrupted by a hilarious baby problem on the sidelines, that almost snuffs the comeback win. In part, this is a 'battle of the sexes' drama/comedy film, focusing on the conflict between the desire of college student fathers to play on the football team vs. their responsibilities in providing for their family and helping care for their baby. Hence, two of the featured songs are titled "They've Never Figured Out a Woman"(O'Connor), and "Men are Little Children"(Gloria). This last ditty was inspired by Don's insistence that the school football team needs him, and by his clumsiness and lack of enthusiasm regarding domestic and baby care activities. The title song, done as a group sing along in the finale, is the only non-original tune, having been a standard since the 'roaring' '20s, with Eddie Cantor most identified with it. Of course, the 'baby' in the minds of the composers was no infant! Walter Scharf and Jack Brooks composed the other songs.Director George Sherman had specialized in low budget B films, mostly westerns, for several studios. Glossy musicals weren't exactly Universal's forte!

Don does one impressive elaborate solo tapdance routine, in a Laundromat setting, which looks like a warm up for his future roles in bigger budget films at MGM and Fox, including "Singing in the Rain", "I Love Melvin", "Call Me Madam", and "There's No Business Like Show Business". Like contemporaries Judy Garland and Martha Raye, for example, Don was born into a vaudeville family and began performing on stage at an early age. Paramount used him as a child actor.Universal then signed him for a series of low budget teen-oriented musical comedies, mostly costaring Peggy Ryan as a dancer and Gloria Jean as songstress.He remained with Universal, mostly doing straight comedies, with the occasional musical comedy. His 'Frances the talking mule' series were popular and profitable, if a waste of his musical talent, which later was mostly utilized by other studios.

Gloria DeHaven, the same age as Don, was also the offspring of a theatrical family, and was signed at an early age by MGM, where she mostly was relegated to second tier musicals and other films. In the mid '40s, she had 2 children and did little film work. Now, she was returning to the occasional role in musicals, but wold not go on to become a big star. She had a good singing voice(I occasionally play one of her CDs) and passable dancing and acting talent.

Gruff Charles Colburn plays the combo football coach and biology teacher at this small college. His feud with one time romantic partner Professor Sophia Boland(Barbara Brown) provides additional fuel for the 'battle of the sexes' theme. Don's 'Mr. Fix-it' attempt to get these two old confirmed singles back together predictably ends in disaster. Anyone who has seen a good sampling of late '30s through '50s films will instantly recognize the charismatic Coburn, who usually played some sort of fatherly authority figure.

You can currently see this film in its entirety on You Tube.
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6/10
Charles Coburn makes it cute
HotToastyRag4 January 2019
As usual, Charles Coburn-or "Piggy", as he's lovingly referred to in my house-is the most adorable part of the movie. He just has one of those faces, and one of those voices; he improves the scenes he's in, no matter how bad the rest of the movie is. In Yes Sir, That's My Baby, it's a slapstick battle of the sexes between Donald O'Connor and the rest of his college's football team versus their wives. The wives, also in college, unite because of their professor's feminist lectures, and forbid their husbands from being on the football team. The husbands, bolstered by their professor's manly lectures, maintain they can't be kept away from their greatest passion. It turns out the only reason the feud exists is because the professors, Charles Coburn and Barbara Brown, used to be engaged and now hate each other!

So, when Piggy is making the audience laugh with jokes about how important it is to be the man of the house while simultaneously falling to pieces at the sight of a newborn baby, the movie is pretty cute. And to be honest, the first few times the husbands boast about their babies' accomplishments like wives usually do-Donald O'Connor says his son was born with a tooth-and struggle with the laundry and walk down the street with a pack of strollers are funny. There are definitely some sequences that get too silly, or too dated, for this movie to be a treasure I'll want to watch over and over again. Overall, it was enjoyable, especially when compared to some really stinky battle-of-the-sexes movies from that era, but mostly because of Charles Coburn's class and comedic timing. Donald O'Connor gets to show off his dancing skills with a memorable routine in the laundromat. With all those backflips and acrobatic moves, it's no wonder he was cast to play Buster Keaton in the following decade!
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5/10
WW II vets with families at college on the GI Bill
SimonJack18 June 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The idea for this plot was a good one for the post World War II years. Unfortunately, this film is just too hokey. The script is poor and disjointed, with little imagination for attempts at humor. Consequently, there isn't very much. Just a couple of songs make it a musical, but they are soon forgotten. Donald O'Connor does one dance number.

The film has a sense of cavalier about its presentation of former servicemen going to college on the GI-bill. It was a tougher time for those vets who still had to work to put food on the table. Another movie, made a year earlier, captured the spirit of the times and situation quite well, using humor and drama. William Holden, Jean Crain and Edmund Gwenn starred in "Apartment for Peggy."

The acting just isn't that good here, and despite a good cast, the film is flat and not very interesting. For one thing, the plot tries to cram too much into the story. A battle of the sexes theme intermingles with couples with babies, the guys in college on the GI Bill, the men having been football players, and a coach and teacher antagonists. I don't know how it fared as the movies, but I suspect that "Yes Sir, That's My Baby" wasn't a big hit in its day.

About the only thing that seemed authentic in the plot was the Quonset hut housing. The only line I could see that might have elicited laughter in its time was one from O'Connor's Bill Winfield. He says, "Too bad a fireplace doesn't go with this early Quonset." Five stars is a generous rating for this film. I give the film that for the courage of the cast in taking on such a dull, hokey screenplay.
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6/10
Watch it for O'Connor's dance
bderoes26 December 2013
Right now, you can watch this on YouTube.

While I'm usually an avid fan of Charles Coburn (The More the Merrier, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes), his appearance here could have been replaced by an entirely different type without any loss.

About 34 minutes in, O'Connor does a very good dance, showcasing his grace and athleticism, and making interesting use of his non-dancing male extras.

I'd probably buy this title just for those 4-5 minutes. Universal needs to publish O'Connor's movies on DVD, or at least create a compilation of his musical numbers.
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