Saturday Morning Musical: Pennies From Heaven

This is one of my favorite movies—a genuinely dark and twisted work about hope and dreams in depression era Chicago. Characters expose themselves in truly uncomfortable ways that reek of desperation that can make it hard to watch at times. It could be the most depressing musical every made which might be why it failed so badly on its release. It arrived just in the right time for me, coming out when I was eighteen, playing into my love of musicals.

It helps that it was written by Dennis Potter and based on his BBC series of the same name.

A long time ago

A million years BC

The best things in life

Were absolutely free.

But no one appreciated

A sky that was always blue.

And no one congratulated

A moon that was always new.

So it was planned that they would vanish now and them

And you must pay before you get them back again.

That’s what storms were made for

And you shouldn’t be afraid for

Every time it rains it rains

Pennies from heaven.

Don’t you know each cloud contains

Pennies from heaven.

You’ll find your fortune falling

All over town.

Be sure that your umbrella is upside down.

Trade them for a package of sunshine and flowers.

If you want the things you love

You must have showers.

So when you hear it thunder

Don’t run under a tree.

There’ll be pennies from heaven for you and me

Sunday Morning Music: Harry Chapin
Tao Te Ching: Stephen Mitchell Translation

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