Hans Christian Andersen (1952)

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Hans Christian Andersen became one of Danny's most popular movies, and he often sang the songs from the movie when performing live for children. The movie is based very loosely around the life of Hans Christian Andersen, the famous storyteller. In the movie, Hans is a cobbler who loves telling stories, especially for the children of the town. However, the schoolmaster highly disapproves of this because the children are always late for school. He finally goes to the city council and Hans is ordered to stop. His teenage apprentice, Peter, convinces Hans to leave the town and go to Copenhagen. Hans takes up his suggestion and immediately leaves for Copenhagen, soon to be followed by Peter. Together they arrive in the city where circumstances allow Hans to meet up with a ballet company. In fixing some ballet shoes for the main ballerina, he ends up falling in love.

After the ballet company leaves on tour, Hans and Peter stick around in Copenhagen making a living for themselves. Hans starts telling his stories to the children of the town, but makes sure to respect the schoolmaster and his schedule. He ends up telling one special story to a young boy, Lars. This young boy had been sick and the doctor had shaved Lars' head. As a result, the other kids were constantly teasing him because of his bald head. Hans sings him the story of "The Ugly Duckling." Eventually, Lars tells his father, the man in charge of the newspaper, and he ends up printing Hans' stories.

When the ballet company returns, Hans is quite happy but eventually realizes that the ballerina is indeed married and not in love with Hans, as he had mistakenly thought. Disappointed, Hans and Peter return to their town where everyone now loves Hans and his stories.

Picking a favorite scene for this movie wasn't easy. There weren't any actual scenes that stood out to me, none that I loved watching over and over again. Truthfully, this is my least favorite of Danny's movies. It's never quite grown on me like the others have; I'm not really sure why. The songs are enjoyable and are probably my favorite parts. As a result, I chose the song "The Ugly Duckling" for my favorite scene. The lyrics and some pictures are listed below:

There once was an ugly duckling
with feathers all stubby and brown.
And the other birds in so many words said,
"Get out of town.
Get out,
get out,
get out of town."
And he went with a quack and a waddle and a quack in a flurry of eider down.

(speaking) Would you like me to tell you the rest of the story? (Lars nods) All right.

That poor little ugly duckling
went wandering far and near.
But at every place they said to his face,
"Now get out of here.
Get out,
get out,
get out of here."
And he went with a quack and a waddle and a quack and a very unhappy tear.

All through the winter time,
he hid himself away
ashamed to show his face
afraid of what others might say.
All through the winter,
in his lonely clump of weed
'til a flock of swans spied him there and very soon agreed.
"You're a very fine swan indeed."
"A swan? Me a swan? Ah, go on."  
He said, "Yes, you're a swan. Take a look at yourself in the lake and you'll see."
And he looked, and he saw, and he said, "I am a swan! Wee!"

"I'm not such an ugly duckling.
No feathers all stubby and brown.
For in fact these birds, in so many words, said,
'The best in town.
The best,
the best,
the best in town.'
Not a quack, not a quack, not a waddle or a quack, but a glide and a whistle and a snowy white back.
And a head so noble and high.
Say who's an ugly duckling? Not I."

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