Bing Crosby heads up Here Comes the Waves, a Paramount offering that finds him in fine form with Betty Hutton pulling double duty as twin sisters and Sonny Tufts as the comedic relief, friend and nemesis of Crosby as the two fight over the same girl. It tends to get a little silly as one might expect but is a great outing featuring the United States Naval Reserve or as they were more commonly referred to – Waves.
Crosby plays Johnny Cabot who is tired of being famous or more to the point, tired of the throngs of girls that follow him everywhere, making his life a little close to impossible unless he wears a disguise. Windy Smith, his best pal, cannot understand why he would not enjoy being fawned over by a constant barrage of women but goes along with Johnny as that is what friends do. Soon enough, the two meet up with the Allison Twins – Susie and Rosemary and where the former is completely head over heels in love with Johnny, Rosemary is not and cannot understand what the big fuss is over. This intrigues Johnny to no end and he soon begins to woo Rosemary much to the dismay of her sister and of Windy and soon enough, the two are in cahoots to break Johnny and Rosemary up leading to a lot of fun, music and drama throughout.
With a fair amount of lighthearted comedy and a handful of musical numbers courtesy of the film’s lead and Hutton who have great chemistry on-screen, there is nothing one could honestly dislike about the film. Crosby gives his usual effortless and effervescent performance, a trait one will find in any movie he happens to appear in which makes for an instant watch should he be in the cast. The man makes it look easy and it almost seems like he rubs that off on his co-stars as well as everyone in this picture did a fine job to make for a very entertaining time. Almost all of the musical numbers were quite good though it would have been nice to see That Old Black Magic delivered a little more uptempo considering the lead-up to it was fairly suspenseful in a sort of way with the excitement of the audience who were awaiting the performance by Johnny Cabot. There is one certain musical number featuring one of Bing’s better-known hits which is best forgotten to time as it no longer represents today’s society if it ever did. Hutton is good but Bing is the man who has sold millions of records and who draws in this film and for good reason.
There is little actual war in the film though it is built all around it, namely recruiting for the Waves and it is good to see a different side of the armed forces take the spotlight for once. There is a bit of flag-waving throughout and is done perfectly well, built into the musical numbers and evidenced by Johnny’s eagerness to join a fighting ship and not simply be a token soldier on the sidelines. In the end, it is all a bit of fluff but Here Come the Waves is of the best kind and well worth a watch.
3.5 out of 5