One of the finest American musicals, this 1944 film by Vincente Minnelli is an intentionally self-contained story set in 1903, in which a happy St Louis family is shaken to their roots by the prospect of moving to New York, where the father has a better job pending. Judy Garland heads the cast of Meet Me in St Louis
in what amounts to a splendid, end-of-an-era story that nicely rhymes with the onset of the 20th century. The film is extraordinarily alive, the characters strong, and the musical numbers are so splendidly part of the storytelling that you don't feel the film has stopped for an interlude. --Tom Keogh
Judy Garland stars in Vincente Minnelli's classic musical following the middle-class Smith family in the lead up to the 1904 World's Fair hosted in St Louis. Esther (Garland), the second eldest daughter of Alonzo (Leon Ames) and Anna Smith (Mary Astor), falls for her new next door neighbour, John Truitt (Tom Drake), and initially has difficulty winning his affections. When their romance begins to blossom, however, Esther learns that Alonzo's employer is transferring him to New York where he plans to move the family. It soon becomes clear how much the move will affect his four daughters and son, Lon Jr. (Hank Daniels), and, what's more, it means they will miss the World's Fair. The film includes the songs 'Meet Me in St. Louis', 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas' and 'The Trolley Song'.