Let’s Be Happy

Date: 1957
Director: Henry Levin
Production Company: Marcel Hellman Productions

Stars: Vera-Ellen, Tony Martin, Robert Flemyng, Gordon Jackson
Location(s): Edinburgh, Hertfordshire, Paris (France), USA

Region(s): , ,

Storyline:

Jeannie MacLean of Heatherdale, Vermont, decides to take a trip to Scotland after being left a small fortune by her Grandfather.

Additional Information:

Screen captures by Ray Edwards

 

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Opening shots in this movie, filmed in Technicolour and Cinemascope, are of Heatherdale, Vermont. A very pictureque village somewhere in the USA, I cannot find a Heatherdale in Vermont.

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The camera zooms down into the village setting the scene for where the main character, Jeannie MacLean (Vera Ellen) lives. The following scenes of Jeannie's home and yard were all filmed on a Studio set.

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Jeannie decides to take trip to Scotland via Paris. En route via the airports, she briefly bumps into Stanley Smith (Tony Martin). In Paris, France, we see Stanley walking to his hotel. Is that the Arc de Triomphe in the background? If so the street is either Champs Elysees or Grande Armee.

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Again all indoor scene in France were studio sets. Indicating Jeannie's arriving in Scotland, the camera shows a scenic view of the Castle and Princes Street in Edinburgh, Scotland. We were here with Peter Sellers in Battle of the Sexes.

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This appears to have been filmed from the Balmoral Hotel. My ground level shot was taken in front of the hotel looking across the Waverley Mall. (SD)

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The camera pans down to see Jeannie squeezing between the crowds along Princes Street, Edinburgh to watch a march-by of a Scots Military Band.

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Not much of a crowd here today. (SD)

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Fascinated by the Scots Military Band, Jeannie proceeds to walk alongside them in step. The regiment may well be the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders with pipers in green tunics.

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Now viewed from a conveniently placed pedestrian crossing. (SD)

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Walking from Princes Street, Jeannie, the one in red, looks to cross the road towards her hotel.

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To the right is the Parish Church of St. Cuthbert seen in 'Greyfriars Bobby' (1961) with Edinburgh Castle in the background. (SD)

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Having crossed the road, Jeannie pauses to look at Edinburgh Castle.

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The Caledonian Hotel, now known as the Waldorf Astoria was also seen in 'Driving Lessons'. (SD)

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Jeannie enters The Caledonian Hotel. Included this still more for the historical value of a tram in the background.

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Trams have returned to Edinburgh but no longer run along Lothian Road so a bus will have to do as a substitute. (SD)

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Jeannie having made the acquaintance of Lord James McNairn (Robert Flemyng)in the hotel, the next day the pair take a tour of Edinburgh.

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Originally viewed from Mills Mount, Edinburgh Castle, where, since 1972, the one o'clock gun has been situated. Can't stand next to the gun, so now, viewed slightly further to the right. (SD)

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Lord McNairn acts as a tour guide along the way . . .

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The base of the Scott Monument in Princes Street Gardens. (SD)

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. . . pointing out the sites and giving information on them.

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An autumnal day in Princes Street Gardens, with buildings on Mound Place seen in the background. (SD)

Meanwhile, Stanley is seeking out business men who might promote his washing machines, even if it means getting his feet wet.

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Brothers Alan & Graham Watt recently spent a few days up in the Killin and Kenmore area of Scotland. This is the bridge carrying the A827 into the village of Kenmore with the River Tay in foreground and Loch Tay beyond.

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The fishing businessman suggested to Stanley to sell his idea to his wife. His wife who is playing golf at St. Andrew's. Here we see Stanley asking for directions to where the businessman's wife is playing. This is the St Andrew's Links Clubhouse, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland

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On a tee at the Golf Club, Stanley tries to demonstrate his product as the businessman's wife only speaks french.

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In the meantime, Lord McNairn is on the ferry on the Forth with Jeannie. We were hereabouts in the 39 Steps.

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Since the film was made, two road bridges have been built, so with no need for a ferry, this is viewed from South Queensferry Pier. (SD)

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Having disembarked the ferry, Lord McNairn drives Jeannie away heading for the home of her Grandfather.

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Hawes Pier, South Queensferry, beside the Forth Rail Bridge. (SD)

Lord McNairn and Jeannie arriving in the village of her Grandfather.

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Dave Buckley has located the village as Luss on Loch Lomond but he has not been able to find a street name. With a population of only 120 five years ago it is probably unnecessary but there were proposals at that time to build up to 60 family homes. A Google Earth view. (RL)

Having arrived in the village, Lord McNairn parks his car alongside Loch Lomond.

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Another Google view from Dave confirming the view from Luss. (RL)

Lord McNairn and Jeannie admire the view over the loch.

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The street with no name in Luss from Dave and Google. (RL)

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Taking more of the view in, they drive alongside the loch.

Lord McNairn pulls into the village heading for the hotel where members of Jeannie's Grandfathers family are gathered. Jules Ballantyne's Scottish heritage is proving valuable. This she says, is the village of Kenmore on the northern end of Loch Tay. (RL)

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Brothers Alan & Graham Watt supplied this photograph to confirm.

Lord McNairn pulls into a parking space outside the hotel. The name of the hotel in the movie is Breadalbane Hotel.

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The hotel is now called the Kenmore Hotel, say Jules Ballantyne. It's Breadalbane land she adds, hence the former name of the hotel. Also, the church looks "less pointy". The website "undiscovered Scotland" says that the tower was heightened in 1869 topped off with pinnacles, removed in 1950. But this film was 1957! (RL) Brothers Alan & Graham Watt supplied this photograph to confirm

Lord McNairn introduces himself to the hotellier.

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Brothers Alan & Graham Watt confirm the Kenmore Hotel location in Kenmore Scotland. One wonders if the Brothers sat outside and took in the lovely village?

Jeannie, observing Lord McNairn and the hotellier.

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Brothers Alan & Graham Watt took this lovely shot in Kenmore, Scotland. The building on the far right has been altered. The only thing missing is the fantastic Classic Cars and the gorgeous Vera-Ellen.

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Later on, Lord McNairn drives Jeannie to his home.

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They approach the Lord's modest home. Jules Ballantyne recognises a modest home when she sees one, Thirlestane Castle, near Lauder in the Borders. (RL)

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Lord McNairn's home. The rest of the movie is shot on stage sets. A clearer shot of Thirlestane Castle to confirm Jules's identification. (RL)

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