Dowdy housewife Kitty dotes on her self-centered husband but divorces him when his mistress shows up at their home one day to break up their marriage. Bob had become bored with her ... See full summary »
Robert Z. Leonard
Rod La Rocque,
Idealistic attorney Anton Adam makes headlines when he successfully prosecutes a prominent New York racketeer named Gilmurry. Adam's sudden renown attracts the attention of high-profile ... See full summary »
It's 1929. The studio gave the cinema its voice gave offered the audiences a chance to see their favorite actors and actresses from the silent screen era to see and for the first time can ... See full summary »
Rick Belrow Livingston, in love with Broadway star Lisa, is sentenced to 30 days in jail for speeding through a small town. He persuades the judge's daughter Cindy to let him leave for one ... See full summary »
A cardinal is arrested for treason against the state. As a prince of his church, and a popular hero of this people, for his resistance against the Nazis during the war and afterward his ... See full summary »
Johnny Blake, dodging the law on a false murder charge, gets work in the oil fields. His boss and friend Hap O'Connor turns on him when Johnny and Hap's girlfriend Linda fall in love. An ... See full summary »
Betty Compson more than makes up for sound, photography
When I saw "On With the Show" on Turner Classic Movies, I was very disappointed in the poor quality of the picture and the sound, but was very pleased by some clever dialog, although realizing some of it was not so clever, and I was absolutely in awe of the performance of Betty Compson.
She was not only lovely just to look at, in her big scene near the end, she stole the show.
She was more than charming -- she was adorable.
Joe E. Brown's presence in a movie is usually enough to make me skip it but here he is toned down considerably, is not so silly, and he performs an eccentric dance with a surprising athleticism. I actually liked him in "On With the Show."
Sally O'Neil was surprising. She sounded at first like some precocious child, with little-girlish voice, but when this caterpillar bursts out of her cocoon, she is a star.
One other aspect of this film is almost unique for its time: The cast is integrated. Right there on stage are black dancers with white dancers, although to be accurate there is not interaction between white and black. Still, it was a start.
Ethel Waters made what was apparently her film debut, and surely was an immediate hit since she was already a star in other media.
A 21st century viewer of "On With the Show" must consider context, remember the times in which it was made, during the changeover from silents to talkies, to be able to appreciate it fully.
There were lots of great individual talents involved, and a viewer should try to ignore the poor framing of the scenes and the poor quality of the sound, at least some of which might be because of the age or even generation of the print.
But appreciate the historicity as well as the talent, and you will enjoy "On With the Show" as much as I did.
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