Friday, May 11, 2007

The Hollywood Revue of 1929 (1929).

The Scoop:
This slow-moving affair was conceived as a showcase for MGM's roster of stars, as well as their new sound equipment. Basically, this means we get a string of musical numbers broken up by quasi-comedic exchanges between the stars. Mostly for fans of music from that period (ukeleles!), although there are plenty of historical curiosities (Marion Davies!) as well. Probably more fun to watch at the time than it is now. Still, it would be fun to see today's stars do something like this...

Best Bit:
Bessie Love's solo number, with its self-deprecating lyrics and athletic dancing.

Side Note:
Includes an early Technicolor sequence of Norma Shearer and John Gilbert, two of the most popular romantic leads of the time, doing the balcony scene from "Romeo and Juliet." Seven years later, Shearer would finally get make the full-length movie version of the play she had been pushing for for years, but because Gilbert had destroyed his career by that point, her Romeo was Leslie Howard.

Companion Viewing:
"Hollywood Party" (1934) and "Hollywood Canteen" (1944).


Take a Look:
Laurel and Hardy work their magic:

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