I've always considered the movie version of Li'l Abner -- read Mark Evanier's great piece on it, part of a series on the Li'l Abner musical -- to be a disappointment, in spite of the great cast (which was almost identical to the stage show). The decision to treat it as a filmed stage play, with the same basic sets and stage business as the play, just makes the material feel less interesting than it could be; I don't think a stage play needs to be "opened up" for its own sake, but even when shooting on an interior set, there are ways of making the result feel cinematic. I'm pretty sure that if Michael Kidd had been available to direct the film (he pulled out of the project and his Broadway staging was re-created by others), he would have re-thought his staging and not have had everyone standing around statically.
My other problem with the movie is the musical arrangement; Paramount had a good music department, but in this case it sounds like the music was done on the cheap. To see what I mean, compare the "Jubilation T. Cornpone" number from the movie with the same song from the Broadway recording (dubbed over footage from the movie). Broadway shows usually have smallish orchestras and choruses, even when augmented for the cast recordings, but the chorus and orchestra on the Broadway recording still sound much larger and fuller than in the movie version.
Broadway cast recording: