Hollywood Movie Musicals
When most people think of movie musicals, films like "Singin' in the Rain", "Sound of Music", "The Red Shoes", "On the Town", "White Christmas", "Ziegfeld Follies", "Top Hat", "Funny Face" and "Funny Girl" immediately come to mind. Such films are included in this book, as are many of the works of major stars, including Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby, Gene Kelly, Betty Grable, Shirley Temple, Julie Andrews, Elvis Presley, Lucille Ball, Alice Faye, Jeanette MacDonald, Maurice Chevalier, Nelson Eddy, Doris Day, Dick Powell, Betty Hutton, Eleanor Powell, and Al Jolson. But attention is also drawn to less lavishly produced but very pleasant musical offerings from both major and minor studios (including perhaps the finest "B" musical ever made). In all, 125 pictures are reviewed and detailed with full cast and technical credits, plus songs and musical numbers, awards, release dates and other essential background information.
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Great Introduction to Those Fabulous Film MusicalsUser Review - Astaire - Borders
As you may guess from my reviewer nickname, Fred Astaire is my number one movie hero. I use the word "hero" deliberately. Fred is not just the smoothest dancer in the world, he's the guy who's always ... Read full review
This is the sixteenth volume in a series of books under the general heading of “Hollywood Classics”. I previously did a review for Reid’s A Guide To The Best In Cinema Thrills
This one looks at the ‘great, good and glamorous’ Hollywood movie musicals.
Over 140 musicals are covered, with listings of cast and crew, songs, and other credits; a synopsis, interesting notes, a viewer’s guide to audience appropriateness, the author’s personal comments on the movie, and other views by previous reviewers.
From 1930’s Check And Double-Check to 1973’s animated Robin Hood, there’s a movie here for almost every taste and age.
Reid is very frank in his comments about the movies. If he likes it, he says so: “A brilliant script by Ben Hecht. A Western, would you believe? But what an inventive Western it is! Full of highly original incidents, plenty of action and color. The cast is magnificent. And it’s all so masterfully directed by Jack Conway, one of my personal favorites”. (Song Of The Plain)
By the same token, if he doesn’t like it, he tells you that, also: “I know that Ed Wood is universally famed as the world’s worst director, but I disagree. I’d like to nominate George P Quigley. On the evidence of this movie, Mr Quigley easily outdistances Mr Wood.” (Murder With Music)
You’ll have to read this fascinating book to find out why the author feels this way.
And, if you haven’t treated yourself to a good musical video or DVD lately, you’ll find an excellent selection of suggestions here.