Synopsis by Hal Erickson
MGM's new musical screen team of Esther Williams and Howard Keel were given plenty to do in the pleasant if unambitious songfest Texas Carnival. Williams plays Debbie Telford, one-half of a carnival performing team. The other half is Corny Quinnell (Red Skelton), who breaks up the act when he is mistaken for Texas millionaire Dan Sabinas (Keenan Wynn). Living high on the hog in Sabinas' absence, Corny manages to smooth the romantic path for Debbie and ranch foreman Slim Shelby (Keel), while he dallies with the luscious Sunshine Jackson (Ann Miller). Red Skelton is given more opportunity to shine than usual, especially during a riotous poker game (this scene was a particular favorite of screenwriter Dorothy Kingsley, who felt it could have been even funnier had director Charles Walters "punched it up" cinematically). Esther Williams' particular highlight is a swimming sequence in a waterless hotel room, a bit of special-effects wizardry that only the MGM tech staff could have dreamed up.
brother, carnival, millionaire, mistaken-identity, role-switching, sister