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What Price Hollywood?Gender and Sex in the Films of George Cukor$
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Elyce Rae Helford

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780813179292

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813179292.001.0001

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Queer Musical Excess

Queer Musical Excess

(p.119) 7 Queer Musical Excess
What Price Hollywood?

Elyce Rae Helford

University Press of Kentucky

Queer reading strategies based on the approach of Alexander Doty reveal transgressive moments in Cukor’s three musical comedies: Les Girls (1957), Let’s Make Love (1960), and My Fair Lady (1964). Queer conceptualizations of the Hollywood musical, particularly the concept of “excess,” lead to readings of specific scenes that disrupt the heteronormative flow of the narratives. Gene Kelly performs a spoof of Marlon Brando in The Wild One, within a tale of a womanizer and the three women who love him; Milton Berle camps up a lesson on dating opposite Yves Montand; and Rex Harrison ponders why a woman can’t be more like a man, within a narrative that resists romantic closure.

Keywords:   Alexander Doty, queerness, queer studies, musical (genre)

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