I read Cagney wanted to make this film to prove to his fellow Americans that he wasn't a communist, but a full-blown patriot. It sure sounds plausible, as this is no doubt one of the most patriotic/American films I've ever seen. And no, that's definitely not a compliment, unless you truly, deeply, wholeheartedly love the Stars and Stripes country, this is almost impossible to sit through.
A film about the life of George M. Cohan, a musical director, actor and dancer who, after going through his fair share of trouble, made it big and received a medal for his exceptional career. That's two full hours of song and dance with James Cagney, an actor who couldn't really sing or dance.
If it would've been Astaire and Crosby, it might've been a bit easier to swallow, these guys have charm and can actually do this kind of thing. Cagney is just completely terrible here. That and the fact that I got a little nauseous from so much love for a land that isn't mind made this one of the worst things I sat through in quite a while.