Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (film)

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Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is a 1954 musical film directed by Stanley Donen, with music by Saul Chaplin and Gene de Paul, and lyrics by Johnny Mercer. The script (by Albert Hackett, Frances Goodrich, and Dorothy Kingsley) is based on the short story The Sobbin' Women, by Stephen Vincent Benét, which was based in turn on the Ancient Roman legend of The Rape of the Sabine Women. The film was a 1954 Oscar nominee for Best Picture.

The film is particularly known for the unusual choreography by Michael Kidd, which makes dance numbers out of such mundane frontier pursuits as chopping wood and (most famously) raising a barn.

Contents

Plot

The film's story is about a backwoodsman named Adam Pontipee and his new bride Milly, who marries him after knowing him for only a few hours. On returning with him to his cabin in the mountains, Milly is surprised to learn that Adam is one of seven brothers living in the same cabin. The brothers have been named alphabetically from the Old Testament: Adam, Benjamin, Caleb, Daniel, Ephraim, Frank (short for Frankincense, the Old Testament having no names beginning with F), and Gideon. All of the brothers have red hair and are well over six feet tall, except Gideon, who is younger and shorter than his brothers.

Milly teaches Adam's rowdy, ill-behaved younger brothers manners and social mores, including how to dance. At first, the brothers have a hard time changing from their "mountain man" ways, but eventually they come to see that the only way they will get a girl of their own is if they do things Milly's way. They are able to test their new manners at a barn-raising, where they meet six girls they like—Dorcas, Ruth, Martha, Liza, Sarah and Alice—and, fortunately, the girls like the brothers too. However, the girls already have suitors from the town, who jealously taunt the brothers into fighting during the barn-raising, and, although the brothers do not start the fight, they are banished from the town by the townspeople because of it.

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