Adam, the eldest of seven brothers, goes to town to get a wife. He convinces Milly to marry him that same day. They return to his backwoods home. Only then does she discover he has six brothers – all living in his cabin. Milly sets out to reform the uncouth siblings, who are anxious to get wives of their own. Then, after reading about the Roman capture of the Sabine women, Adam develops an inspired solution to his brothers’ loneliness.
Spectacular dancing and great music..Keel and Powell never did anything better!
A permanent place in the history of film musicals is obviously the fate of ‘Seven Brides for Seven Brothers’ the minute Howard Keel begins to sing ‘Bless Your Beautiful Hide’. His robust romantic presence and voice are perfectly suited to blend with Jane Powell’s sweet soprano–the Nelson and Jeanette of the ’50s era. Jane is as perky as can be as the girl who impulsively marries him only to find that she’s expected to keep house for him and his seven handsome brothers. (Echos of ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ here and a touch of political incorrectness). But all that can be forgiven, for what follows is the most outrageously entertaining musical treat from the MGM factory–singin’ and dancin’ like you’ve never seen before! The exuberant acrobatic dancing of the brothers is a special highlight–particularly during the barnraising sequence. And their wistful rendering of the carefully staged ‘Lonesome Polecat’ is another high point. Powell and Keel get to warble some enchanting tunes and both are totally charming and professional in their roles. Keel probably never had a better role–except perhaps ‘Showboat’ or ‘Annie Get Your Gun’, handsome, macho and utterly believable. By all means reward yourself with this gem–either in regular format or widescreen, it’s certainly one of the greatest MGM musicals of the ’50s. Perhaps, as others have noted, the only drawbacks are some of the obviously painted mountain backgrounds–but this never destroys the overall charm of the film. The songs are splendid and the dances are as zestful as any you’re ever likely to see.