Sally was an orphan who got her name from the telephone exchange where she was abandoned as a baby. In the orphanage, she discovered the joy of dancing and has been practicing since. ...
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Joe E. Brown,
William Collier Jr.
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John is a timid student who works at the University Book Store. He is studying to be a botanist and has a secret crush on the lovely Julia. One day, one of his letters gets accidentally ... See full summary »
Sally was an orphan who got her name from the telephone exchange where she was abandoned as a baby. In the orphanage, she discovered the joy of dancing and has been practicing since. Working as a waitress, she goes from job to job until she finds a job that also allows her to dance. At the restaurant, she meets Blair, and they both fall for each other, but Blair is engaged to Marcia. Sally is hired to impersonate a famous Russian dancer named Noskerova, but at that engagement, she is found to be a phony and that Blair is engaged. Undaunted, she proceeds with her life and has her show on Broadway, but she still thinks of Blair. Written by
Tony Fontana <email@example.com>
The musical play, "Sally", opened at the New Amsterdam Theatre in New York on 21 December 1920 and closed on 22 April 1922 after 561 performances. The opening night cast included Marilyn Miller, who originated her movie role as Sally, Leon Errol as Connie, Walter Catlett as Otis and Alfred P. James as Pops, The only songs in the musical used in the film were the title song, "Sally," "Wild Rose" and "Look for the Silver Lining." See more »
Sally, based on the famous Jerome Kern-Otto Harbach-Guy Bolton stage musical, is an oddly-structured piece, at least in its film incarnation. For the first 20 or 30 minutes (I didn't count) there is no music, then it's one song after another until nearly the end, with an unusually long closing title card accompanied by the melody to what is arguably the best song in the piece, "Look for the Silver Lining." The soundtrack quality leaves much to be desired (as we can expect from 1929 technology), but the melodies manage to squeeze through without too much harm, as do most of the vocals sung mainly by the winsome Marilyn Miller and the technically robust Alexander Gray who, while not physically expressive, is able to convey great range and depth by sheer vocal skill, singing in the grand old manner of judiciously trilled R's and well formed vowels. Miller, as showbiz antiquarians know, was the toast of Broadway in the 1920's. It can be said that she has a certain kind of guileless charm exhibited in later decades by Diane Keaton or Meg Ryan in their youth, except that neither of them could dance or sing much. Miller's fancy footwork includes ballet, tap, high kicking and various acrobatics. Joe E. Brown in a supporting role gets a chance to show off his own impressive athleticism on the dance floor; in his late 30s here, he could still do a masterful cartwheel in his 50s. Pert Kelton makes a few wisecracks in a nothing role that basically requires her to act, well pert.
The plot drags interminably, the "jokes" land with heavy thuds and one can only be grateful for the generous inclusion of song, though only three Kern numbers make it into this film: the title song (natch), "Look for the Silver Lining" and "The Wild Rose." The balance of the music and lyrics, mostly undistinguished, come from other songwriting teams.
If for no other reason, this is worth a look for the sake of the rarely seen Miller and Gray.
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