Mexican Hayride


1h 17m 1948

Film Details

Release Date
Dec 1948
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Universal-International Pictures Co., Inc.
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures Company, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the musical Mexican Hayride by Herbert and Dorothy Fields and Cole Porter, as produced by Michael Todd (New York, 28 Jan 1944).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 17m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Synopsis

During American Friendship week in Mexico, American policemen chase escaped suspect Joe Bascom, who has just finished a sixty-eight hour samba contest and cannot stop dancing, into a bullfighting arena. He searches for Harry Lambert, a con man who implicated him in a swindle for which he is now being prosecuted. Harry, meanwhile, is scheming to collect money in exchange for a worthless silver mine, and waiting for his cohort, the famous female bullfighter Montana, to name him illegally as the winner of the Amigo Americana contest. Joe does not see Harry but, upon recognizing Montana as his ex-girl friend Mary, distracts her to the point that she names him the contest winner by mistake. Gus's girl friend, the beautiful and ruthless Dagmar, realizes that Joe, as Amigo Americana, will have a lot of press exposure, and convinces Harry to manipulate Joe into helping them sell their mine. To that end, Harry takes a job as the manager of the Amigo Americana week-long tour through Mexico and then saves Joe by telling the police that he is really just mild-mannered Humphrey Fish. As the week continues, Joe, as Humphrey, enjoys the privileges of his position, while Montana, worried that the police will uncover the connection between them, hides Joe's true identity from her boyfriend, American embassy representative David Winthrop. After Winthrop presents Joe with prepared speeches to read throughout the week, Harry hires an elocution teacher, Professor Ganzmeyer, to help him. Dagmar, however, switches speeches, and Joe ends up reading a rousing speech praising silver mines, which leads to several offers for Harry's mine. The next day, after they print multiple titles to the mine, which Harry swears are all legitimate, a suspicious Joe insists on keeping track of Harry's newfound earnings himself. After Joe hides the money, Harry urges Dagmar to find the hiding place, and although Dagmar tries to seduce Joe with a song and a samba, he wins her over when he kisses her at the same moment his boot spur gets caught in an electrical socket. Joe then leaves to attend the night's fiesta, but is stopped when Winthrop, Montana, Harry and the police arrive to reveal that Joe has been identified as a fugitive, and that Harry's mine scheme is a scam. Joe, angry that Harry has involved him in another swindle, tells Winthrop he will return the mine money. When he goes to his room, both the money and Dagmar are gone, but Winthrop asks the police not to arrest Joe until after the week's tour is over, and Joe escapes. The next day, the police take Harry to jail and run into Joe, disguised as a Mexican woman selling tamales. He throws tortilla dough in their faces, allowing Harry to escape. Soon after, Joe, now disguised as a mariachi player, bumps into Harry at a market, and Harry and the police chase him into a bullfight arena, where he dances a samba with the bull. Dagmar, who is watching worriedly, informs Joe that she has hidden the money in a hat the bull is wearing, and he manages to pull the hat off the bull by hypnotizing it. After Joe throws the money to Winthrop, all charges are dropped, and he rides away with Dagmar.

Film Details

Release Date
Dec 1948
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Universal-International Pictures Co., Inc.
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures Company, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the musical Mexican Hayride by Herbert and Dorothy Fields and Cole Porter, as produced by Michael Todd (New York, 28 Jan 1944).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 17m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Quotes

Trivia

The play opened in New York City, New York, USA on 28 January 1944 and ran for 481 performances, closing 17 May 1945. The stars were June Havoc and Bobby Clark, and included Luba Malina, who is also in this movie. Because Abbott and Costello fans expressed annoyance about so many musical numbers in their films, none of Cole Porter's music was used in this film.

Notes

Although this film is based on the 1944 Broadway musical of the same name, it does not feature any Cole Porter music. According to modern sources, the songs were removed because Abbott and Costello's fans had voiced dissatisfaction with the preponderance of musical numbers in their films. Mexican Hayride was Luba Malina's first film, and featured Costello's older brother Pat Costello in a small role. Although Patricia Alphin, Bobby Barber, Salvador Báguez and Amapola Del Vando are listed in Hollywood Reporter production charts, their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed.