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College Swing (1938)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical | 29 April 1938 (USA)
Gracie Alden tries to graduate on college to get an inheritance.


Raoul Walsh


Walter DeLeon (screenplay), Francis Martin (screenplay) | 2 more credits »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
George Burns ... George Jonas
Gracie Allen ... Gracie Alden
Martha Raye ... Mabel Grady
Bob Hope ... Bud Brady
Edward Everett Horton ... Hubert Dash
Florence George ... Ginna Ashburn
Ben Blue ... Ben Volt
Betty Grable ... Betty
Jackie Coogan ... Jackie
John Payne ... Martin Bates
Cecil Cunningham ... Dean Sleet
Robert Cummings ... Radio Announcer
Skinnay Ennis Skinnay Ennis ... Skinnay - Orchestra Leader
Henry Slate Henry Slate ... Hangout Waiter (as The Slate Brothers)
Jack Slate Jack Slate ... Hangout Waiter (as The Slate Brothers)


Gracie Alden tries to graduate on college to get an inheritance.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Musical


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

29 April 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Jazz Academia See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Hubert Dash (Edward Everett Horton) arrives at Alden College in a 1937 Lincoln Model K Limousine. See more »


In the "You're a Natural" number, as Gracie gets out of the car and continues to sing, two members of the crew can be glimpsed briefly in the reflection on the car door. See more »


Featured in The Love Goddesses (1965) See more »


The Old School Bell
Sung by Robert Mitchell and St. Brendan's Choristers
See more »

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User Reviews

Packs A Lot of Talent
3 January 2006 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

I'm normally one who likes a decent plot in a film. But in the case of College Swing a plot would only have gotten in the way.

Headed in this case by Burns and Allen, the talent procured for this film is priceless. Director Raoul Walsh who normally does more serious action/adventure stuff got a whole group of people in a film barely over ninety minutes, to all get a significant turn at displaying their talents. John Payne and Florence George sing nicely even if with some unmemorable songs, then husband and wife Jackie Coogan and Betty Grable do a nice swing dance number, Edward Everett Horton is his usual puritanical fuss budget, and comedy stylists Bob Hope, Martha Raye, Ben Blue, and Jerry Colonna all have memorable bits. The cast even includes in bit roles Bob Cummings and Richard Denning. And of course one of the best swing bands around in Hal Kemp with Skinnay Ennis as vocalist.

Usually Burns and Allen were rarely asked to carry a film. The only time they ever did was in Here Comes Cookie. They are top billed here, but they sure have a lot of support as you can see.

I've said on previous reviews of other films of their's that the comedy of George Burns and Gracie Allen is almost Monty Pythonesque in its humor. In fact the plot such as it is is laid out in a prologue. 200 years earlier Gracie has failed for about the 10th time to graduate college in the Class of 1738. She's hopelessly dumb and her grandfather Tully Marshall makes a bet with the head of the school that if in 200 years no female member of his family ever graduates from college, this college will get the clear title of his fortune which they will hold in trust until then.

Wouldn't you know it, 200 years later a female descendant also Gracie Allen does graduate and she inherits the college. Like she did in Here Comes Cookie, Gracie makes some interesting changes in the faculty and curriculum of the school. Of course it's with a little chicanery she does graduate and that's a problem too.

College Swing is one of those madcap films typical of the Thirties that is the very definition of escapist entertainment. No themes, no messages, just a lot of good laughs.

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