Academy Awards 1954 -
Best Adapted or Musical Song/Score: Adolph Deutsch & Saul Chaplin
Sight and Sound - 06/01/2001
"...[A] rambunctious paean to the Oregon prairies of the 1850s..."
Entertainment Weekly - 10/15/2004
"[With a] magnificent barn-raising dance..."
Sight and Sound - 07/01/2005
"Energy, humour and Coplandesque scoring mark Donen's celebrated musical..."
Description by OLDIES.com:
Things are different for the Pontipee men now that big brother Adam's fetched a bride and brought her to their cabin. Indeed, the unwed brothers are so inspired they raid the town and carry off brides of their own! Like a favorite flannel shirt, everything fits right in this rugged whoop-for-joy directed by Stanley Donen, choreographed by Micahel Kidd and featuring an exhilarating Gene dePaul/Johnny Mercer score that won an Academy Award. Jane Powell and Howard Keel star, supported by a cast of buckskinned dancers and petticoated danseuses. And what steppin'! The barnraising sequence alone - back-flipping, plank-leaping athleticism - leaves a daylong smile "Bless yore beautiful hide," all you brides and brothers!
In the Oregon Territory, mountain man Adam Pontipee (Howard Keel, acting and singing with gusto) comes to town to sell his crops and woo a woman to be his wife, succeeding with spirited Milly (Jane Powell), who is tired of feeding and waiting on so many men at the local inn. Her dreams of keeping house for just one man are shattered when she discovers that Adam shares his pigsty cabin with six brawling brothers. Milly's good cooking and stubborn nature whip the young men into shape and inspire them to seek women of their own. But after a disastrous barn raising during which the brothers snare the attention of the town girls only to be taunted into fighting with the town men, Adam suggests his brothers forget gentle methods of love and follow the actions of the Roman with the Sabine ("Sobbin'") women. The kidnapping of their six sweethearts spurs Milly to throw the men out of the house, but enforced proximity caused by winter and the brothers' good intentions just might help love bloom again.
Manly Adam and dainty but stubborn Milly find love in the Oregon Territory, prompting yearnings in Adam's six brothers for their own women. Milly teaches the brothers manners and introduces them to the town girls, but a fight with the local men inspires the brothers to stop wooing and start kidnapping. Stuck all winter by an avalanche with Milly and the seven brothers, the abducted girls' thoughts turn to weddings as spring approaches. Filled with lively dancing, comic songs, and the heartache of love, SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS is a delightful and fun musical from director Stanley Donen.