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Road to Happiness

Road to Happiness(1941)

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Opera singer Jeff Carter returns from Europe after several years of voice training and learns that his wife Millie divorced him eight months earlier, is now remarried to the wealthy Sam Rankin, and has enrolled their son Danny in military school. Jeff is outraged that Millie coldly sent their son away and threatens to reopen their divorce case if she does not release Danny to him. Danny is thrilled to be reunited his father, even though Jeff is unemployed and they have to live in a boardinghouse. Charley Grady, Jeff's friend and agent, tries to get him work with impresario Pietro Pacelli, but Pacelli refuses to see him. Danny is deeply hurt when his mother reneges on her promise of a birthday party and does not see him. Meanwhile, Jeff sells his music sheets to a kindly pawnbroker so that he can buy Danny a birthday gift, and when he learns about Millie's disgraceful behavior, he insists that she give Danny a party the next week. Jeff's employment prospects continue to be bleak until his landlady, Mrs. Price, gets him an audition with a radio show. Although he will not be singing, Jeff accepts a low-paying part of an Indian on a cowboy show so that he can support Danny, and Danny is thrilled by his father's new role. When Danny next visits Millie, he spends more time with Sam than his disinterested mother, and Sam is appalled by his wife's callous behavior. Millie then refuses to allow Danny to listen to Jeff's radio show because it interferes with her fun. Danny is brokenhearted, but for his father's sake, pretends he had a great time with his mother. Jeff refuses Charley's offer of a job with a touring opera company so that he can remain with Danny, and also refuses Sam's offer to adopt Danny. When a famous opera star is too sick to go on the air, Danny alerts Jeff, who is rehearsing for his show next door. The opera producers hire Jeff rather than cancel the show, and Charley pushes his way into Pacelli's office to force him to listen to the broadcast. Pacelli is so impressed with Jeff's glorious voice that he immediately gives him a contract with his opera company, and Jeff is now able to lavish the good life on Danny.