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Happy Valentine's Day Celebration...From ~darkness-to-light~ As I look at 24 hours Of Romantic Films/Comedies


Valentine's Day is -February 14th 2013
...Coming Up A Day Of Romantic Films...

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Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 15, 2013 at 1:02am

You Were Never Lovelier (Columbia Pictures) is a 1942 Hollywood musical comedy film, set in Buenos Aires. It starred Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Adolphe Menjou and Xavier Cugat, with music by Jerome Kern and lyrics by Johnny Mercer. The film was directed by William A. Seiter.

This, the second of Astaire's outings with Hayworth, avoids wartime themes, and benefits from lavish production values – a consequence of the box-office success of the earlier You'll Never Get Rich. Kern here created a memorable standard with "I'm Old Fashioned", and there is a faultless trio of classic dance routines. Initially, Kern was unhappy about the selection of Cugat and his orchestra; however, when production was complete, he was so pleased with the band's performance that he presented him with a silver baton. Although Hayworth had a fine voice, Harry Cohn insisted on her singing being dubbed throughout by Nan Wynn.

The film follows the usual conventions established by Astaire in his earlier musicals, such as an anti-romantic first meeting between the two leads, a virtuoso dance solo for Astaire, a playful dance duet and a romantic dance duet.

Synopsis

Robert "Bob" Davis (Fred Astaire) is an American dancer who is looking for a job in Buenos Aires after gambling away his money. Bob's friend, bandleader Xavier Cugat, invites him to perform at a wedding in order to catch the eye of the bride's father, Eduardo Acuña (Adolphe Menjou), the owner of a local nightclub. Acuña's four daughters prepare for the wedding of the eldest. According to family tradition, the sisters must wed from oldest to youngest. The beautiful Maria (Rita Hayworth), who is next in line, is notoriously picky with her suitors, much to the dismay of her two younger siblings.

During the reception, Bob tries to catch Maria's attention, but his advances are rebuffed. While in conversation with Acuña, Bob remarks that Maria's personality is like "the inside of a refrigerator," quickly losing favor with his potential employer.

Acuña decides to address Maria's relationship woes and begins sending orchids and love notes to her from an unknown suitor, with the hope that she will eventually find a beloved. One day, Bob delivers the note and flower. Maria, who has become enamored with her secret admirer, sees Bob leaving and concludes that he is her suitor. Maria asks her father to introduce them, and Acuña reluctantly agrees. He makes a deal with Bob: in exchange for performing at the club, Bob will play the part of the suitor and repel Maria with his "obnoxious" personality.

Despite Bob's efforts to disillusion Maria, she grows attracted to him, and the two quickly fall in love. With his plan gone awry, Acuña orders Bob to leave Buenos Aires and composes a farewell love note on his behalf. Acuña's wife sees him writing the note and suspects him of cheating on her, drawing the whole family in with her discovery. Bob is forced to reveal the truth in front of Maria, who feels shocked and betrayed. Impressed by Bob's behavior, Acuña grants him permission to court Maria. After a series of romantic gestures, Maria finally forgives Bob, and the two reconcile.

Key songs/dance routines

Dance director was Val Raset, the only time he collaborated with Astaire, and his choreographic input into the film is unclear. According to Astaire’s biography, he worked out all the numbers with Hayworth while rehearsing above a funeral parlour. Although the setting is a Latin one, Kern felt unable to compose in this style, but Astaire was determined to continue his exploration of Latin dance, which he did with the help of special arrangements by Cugat and Murphy, and the inspiration provided by the enthusiastic and talented Hayworth. This became an important counterbalance to Kern’s tendency to compose sweet, occasionally saccharine, melodies. Hayworth's performance here establishes her claim as one of Astaire’s foremost dance partners.

Cast

Film still with Astaire and Hayworth.
  • "Chiu Chiu": Cugat’s band performs this showpiece samba with music and lyrics by Nicanor Molinare sung and danced by Lina Romay, Miguelito Valdés and chorus in front of Astaire.
  • "Dearly Beloved": Kern’s ballad became a major hit for Astaire – who sings it here – and it was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song. Shortly after, Hayworth (singing dubbed by Nan Wynn) reprises the song with a brief but erotic dance, alone in her bedroom.
  • "Audition Dance": "One of my best solos" was Astaire's verdict on his first solo routine on the theme of Latin dance, celebrated for its comic inventiveness and dexterity. Astaire’s number also inspired Jerome Robbins’ solo Latin dance in the latter’s first ballet Fancy Free, created in 1944.
  • "I'm Old Fashioned": A Kern melody, with Mercer’s lyrics mimed by Hayworth, inspires Astaire’s second Latin romantic partnered dance, and one of his best known. This dance was chosen by Jerome Robbins as the centerpiece to his ballet of the same name, created by him for the New York City Ballet in 1983, as a tribute to Astaire.
  • "The Shorty George": Required more rehearsal time than all other dances together.[1] A synthesis of American Swing or Jive, and virtuoso tap dancing by Astaire and Hayworth, both in top form and exuding a sense of fun in an arrangement by Lyle "Spud" Murphy. The title refers to a popular dance step of the time, attributed to George "Shorty" Snowdon a champion African-American dancer at Harlem’s Savoy Ballroom and reputed inventor of the Lindy Hop or Jitterbug dance styles. Here, as in the "Pick Yourself Up" and "Bojangles of Harlem" numbers from Swing Time, Kern belied his claim that he couldn't write in the Swing style.
  • "Wedding in the Spring": Overly sweet and soppy number performed tongue-in-cheek by Cugat’s band.
  • "You Were Never Lovelier": A Kern melody, sung by Astaire to Hayworth, with a celebratory dance reprise at the film’s end, initiated by an armour-suited Astaire falling off a horse, and shedding his knight’s armour, only to reveal himself in white tie and tails. According to Astaire, the original dance number that followed the song was cut from the film after the preview as the studio felt it "held up the story".
  • "These Orchids": Cugat's band provides an orchestral serenade in rumba style to Hayworth outside her bedroom window with this Kern melody.
Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 15, 2013 at 12:48am

Tonight and Every Night is a 1945 American musical film directed by Victor Saville and starring Rita Hayworth, Lee Bowman and Janet Blair. The film portrays wartime romance and tragedy in a London musical show, loosely modelled on the Windmill Theatre in Soho, that determined not to miss a single performance during the Blitz. Hayworth plays an American showgirl who falls in love with an RAF pilot played by Bowman.

The film was adapted from the play Heart of a City by Lesley Storm. It was used as a Technicolor vehicle for Rita Hayworth after her success with Cover Girl. It was nominated for two Academy Awards: Best Music, Original Song (for "Anywhere") and Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture. A major highlight of the film is Hayworth in the "You Excite Me" number, a number often cited as one of Hayworth's best performances.

Main cast

Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 15, 2013 at 12:41am

Cover Girl is a 1944 American musical film starring Rita Hayworth and Gene Kelly. The film tells the story of a chorus girl given a chance at stardom when she is offered an opportunity to be a highly-paid cover girl. The film was directed by Charles Vidor, and was one of the most popular musicals of the war years.

Primarily a showcase for Rita Hayworth, the film has lavish modern and 1890s costumes, eight dance routines for Hayworth, and songs by Jerome Kern and Ira Gershwin, including the classic "Long Ago (and Far Away)".

Plot

Rusty (Rita Hayworth), a chorus girl working at a nightclub run by her boyfriend Danny McGuire (Gene Kelly), is given a chance for stardom by the wealthy magazine editor John Coudair (Otto Kruger), who years earlier had been in love with her grandmother, Maribelle Hicks. Offered an opportunity to be a highly-paid cover girl, Rusty would faithfully remain with her nightclub act if only Danny would ask her. He doesn't want to stand in her way, so he picks an argument to send her packing. Rusty becomes a star on Broadway after appearing in a musical produced by Coudair's wealthy friend, Noel Wheaton (Lee Bowman), and decides to get married to Wheaton. At the last second she leaves the wedding and reunites with Danny.[1]

Cast

Cast notes
  • The film features cameo appearances by Jinx Falkenburg and Anita Colby as themselves and a little-known starlet named Shelley Winters as one of the young autograph hounds.
  • In one of Hollywood's most unique reprise roles, Kelly played Danny McGuire again—36 years later—in 1980's Xanadu.

Musical numbers

Cover Girl marked the first film collaboration of Jerome Kern and Ira Gershwin.[2]

  • "The Show Must Go On" (Kern - music, Gershwin - lyrics)
  • "Who's Complaining?" (Kern, Gershwin)
  • "Sure Thing" (Kern, Gershwin)
  • "Make Way For Tomorrow" (Kern, Gershwin, E.Y. Harburg - lyrics)
  • "Put Me to the Test" (Kern, Gershwin)
  • "Long Ago (and Far Away)" (Kern, Gershwin)
  • "Poor John" (Henry E. Pether - music, Fred W. Leigh -lyrics)
  • "Alter-Ego Dance" (Kern)
  • "Cover Girl (That Girl on the Cover)" (Kern, Gershwin)

Production

Columbia Pictures originally wanted to used Warner Bros. star Dennis Morgan for Cover Girl, but when Kelly's project at MGM, Dragon Seed, was postponed, MGM extended their loan of Kelly to Columbia, allowing this film to be made with him.[2] Columbia's production head, Harry Cohn, was initially opposed to having Kelly do the film, but producer Schwartz nevertheless obtained him, promising Kelly that he would be able to choreograph, which MGM had not allowed him to do.[3]

Columbia gave Kelly almost complete control over the making of this film, and many of his ideas contributed to its lasting success. He removed several of the soundstage walls so that he, Hayworth, and Silvers could dance along an entire street in one take. He also used trick photography so that he could dance with his own reflection in the sequence "Alter-Ego Dance", achieved using superimposition to give his "double" a ghost-like quality. Kelly, along with Stanley Donen, devised his own choreography.[2]

The film was Hayworth's third musical: the first two she had done opposite Fred Astaire.[3] Hayworth's singing voice was dubbed by Martha Mears.[2]

Cover Girl was Columbia's first Technicolor musical,[2] and songwriter Arthur Schwartz's first venture into producing. The film was a big hit, and made stars out of both Hayworth and Kelly. The success of Cover Girl caused MGM to pay closer attention to Kelly as a viable property, and they allowed him to create his own dance numbers for his next film, Anchors Aweigh, also starring Frank Sinatra. Columbia bought the film rights to Pal Joey, which Kelly had done on Broadway, hoping to pair up Kelly and Hayworth again, but MGM refused to loan him out, and instead the film was made with Sinatra playing the lead.[3]

Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 14, 2013 at 9:53pm

 

That Night in Rio is a 1941 American musical comedy film directed by Irving Cummings and starring Alice Faye, Carmen Miranda and Don Ameche (in a dual role as an American entertainer and an aristocratic businessman he is asked to impersonate temporarily). It is one of several film adaptations of a play called The Red Cat by Rudolf Lothar and Hans Adler. Others are Folies Bergère de Paris (1935) and On the Riviera (1951).

The original songs for the film were written by the musical partnership of Harry Warren and Mack Gordon. These include: "Boa Noite", "They Met in Rio (A Midnight Serenade)", "Chica Chica Boom Chic" and "I, Yi, Yi, Yi, Yi (I Like You Very Much)".

Plot

Larry Martin (Ameche) is an American entertainer in the Casino Samba in Rio de Janeiro. He has a skit in his show, making fun of the womanizing Baron Manuel Duarte (also Ameche). On one particular evening, the Baron and his wife, Baroness Cecilia Duarte (Faye) come to see Larry's impersonation. To the surprise of the couple, the act is amazingly realistic. Backstage, the Baron meets Larry's girlfriend, Carmen (Miranda), and invites her to a party he is going to hold. Carmen declines.

Later in the evening, Larry meets Cecilia and is attracted to her singing and her beauty. He does an impersonation of the Baron for her. But the real Baron receives a telegram that his airline is in danger because a contract is not being renewed and he has already purchased 51% of the stock. Needing money to repay the bank he borrowed it from, he flies down to Buenos Aires.

Larry is hired to play the Baron to confuse his rival, Machado (Naish), but at the stock market, he buys the remainder of the airline stock. That evening, at the party, Larry is hired again to play the Baron. He does not want the Baroness to know, but Cecilia is informed without his knowing. He sweeps her off her feet and they stay close to each other for the remainder of the evening.

Meanwhile, Carmen is furious to discover that Larry is at the party and decides to go there as well, where she discovers that he is impersonating the Baron. To make matter worse, the real Baron returns to his house, confusing all involved. Machado corners Larry instead and talks to him in French, which Larry can't understand. After the party, the Baron discovers that Cecilia was flirting with Larry for the evening and tries to play the joke on her. She, however, inadvertently turns the tables on him.

To get back at his wife, the next morning, the Baron calls and tells Cecilia that his plane has just landed. Cecilia is scared that she has been unfaithful to Manuel but Larry later tells her the truth. At the office, Machado gives the Baron a payment of $32 million for his airline, the topic of his conversation with Larry. The Baron heads home but Cecilia tries one more time to get back at him by pretending to make violent love to Larry. It turns out to be the Baron and all is soon resolved in the end.

Cast

Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 14, 2013 at 9:45pm

Week-End in Havana (Aka: A Week-End in Havana & That Week-End in Havana) is a 1941 Fox musical film directed by Walter Lang. The movie stars Alice Faye and Carmen Miranda. It was the second of three pictures the two stars made together and the second Faye film to have a Latin-American theme, typical for Fox musicals of the early 1940s. Faye was pregnant during filming.

Plot

Jay Williams is a ship company employee who is going to be sent to a riff in Florida. The ship he is traveling on, gets stuck. Every traveler is happy with the presence of Jay, except for the beautiful Nan Spencer. Nan thinks her vacation is being ruined. Jay takes her out for a good time and they soon fall in love.

Cast

  • Alice Faye as Nan Spencer
  • Carmen Miranda as Rosita Rivas
  • John Payne as Jay Williams
  • Cesar Romero as Monte Blanca
  • Cobina Wright as Terry McCracken
  • George Barbier as Walter McCracken
  • Sheldon Leonard as Boris
  • Leonid Kinskey as Rafael, a bellhop
  • Billy Gilbert as Arbolado
  • Muriel Page as Maria, a guest
  • Soundtrack

    • A Week-End in Havana
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Sung by Carmen Miranda in the opening number with chorus and band
      • Reprised by an offscreen chorus during the montage in Havana
      • Played as background music often
    • Rebola a Bola (Embolada)
      • Music by Aloysio De Oliveira and Nestor Amaral
      • Lyrics by Francisco Eugenio Brant Horta
      • Sung in Portuguese by Carmen Miranda in a nightclub
    • When I Love, I Love
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Sung by Carmen Miranda at a nightclub
    • Tropical Magic
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Spanish lyrics by Ernesto Piedra
      • Sung in Spanish by an unidentified trio in a nightclub. Many historians agree that this trio consisted of Francisco Mayorga, Luis Santos, and Joseph Garcia. (The Guadalajara Trio.)
      • Reprised by Alice Faye
      • Reprised by Alice Faye and John Payne on a hay wagon
      • Reprised a cappella by Leonid Kinskey
      • Played as background music often
    • Romance and Rhumba
      • Music by James V. Monaco
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Sung by Alice Faye and Cesar Romero while dancing, the other dancers
    • The Man with the Lollypop Song
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Sung by lollipop vendor Nacho Galindo outside Arbolado's
    • The Nango (Nyango)
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • Sung by Carmen Miranda at the nightclub
      • Sung and danced to by the chorus
      • Danced to by Alice Faye and John Payne
    • The World Is Waiting to Waltz Again
      • Music by Harry Warren
      • Lyrics by Mack Gordon
      • (Cut from picture)
Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 14, 2013 at 5:36am

Springtime in the Rockies is a Technicolor musical comedy film released by Twentieth Century Fox in 1942. A Betty Grable vehicle, with support from John Payne, Carmen Miranda, Cesar Romero, Charlotte Greenwood, and Edward Everett Horton. Also in the cast was Grable's future husband Harry James, and his band. The director was Irving Cummings.

Plot

Vicky Lane and Dan Christy get into an argument about Dan's womanizing and go separate ways. A jealous Vicky becomes involved with her old dance partner and ex-lover Victor Price. Dan's career declines after that and he misses Vicky, so he follows her to a hotel in the Canadian Rockies where she and Victor are opening a new show together. Dan goes on a boozy bender and wakes up the next morning to find that he has somehow hired a Latin secretary named Rosita Murphy. This leads Vicky to think that Dan is up to his old womanizing habits again.

Cast

Background

Springtime in the Rockies was a big hit for Grable and for Fox as it was among the top ten most successful films at the box office in 1942.

Directed by Irving Cummings
Produced by William LeBaron
Written by Walter Bullock
Ken Englund
Jacques Thery
Philip Wylie
Starring Betty Grable
John Payne
Carmen Miranda
Cesar Romero
Music by Alfred Newman
Cinematography Ernest Palmer
Editing by Robert L. Simpson
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date(s) November 6, 1942
Running time 91 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Comment by Darkness To Light... on February 14, 2013 at 4:29am

 

Wabash Avenue is a 1950 American musical film directed by Henry Koster and starring Betty Grable. The film was a remake of Grable's earlier hit 1943 film Coney Island. Ruby Summers is a burlesque queen in a successful dance hall in 1892 Chicago. The owner of the dance hall Mike has cheated his ex-partner Andy Clark out of a half interest in the business. Andy schemes to potentially ruin Mike and also hopes to make Ruby a classy entertainer, as well as his own girl.

Cast

Background

At the time of the release of Wabash Avenue, Betty Grable was at the peak of her career. Throughout the 1940's she was the box office queen, with most of her films being among the top ten highest grossing of each year and being 20th Century Fox's big money makers. Grable was yearning for some originality at this point in her career, but agreed to the idea of remaking her own 1943 film Coney Island with new songs and dances. Coney Island had been a huge success for Fox, and Wabash Avenue followed with great success as well as being among the highest grossing films of 1950. The public loved Grable and her next film My Blue Heaven was also among the highest grossing films of that year.

Wabash Avenue also received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song for the number Wilhelmina...

Directed by Henry Koster
Written by Charles Lederer
Harry Tugend
Starring Betty Grable
Victor Mature
Music by Cyril J. Mockridge
Cinematography Arthur E. Arling
Editing by Robert L. Simpson
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date(s) May 24, 1950
Running time 92 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $2,050,000 (US rentals)[1]

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