Minutes before her wedding to Duke Otto Von Seibenheim, Countess Helene Mara flees, on a whim, to Monte Carlo, where she hopes her luck will save her poor financial state. There, Count ... See full summary »
Minutes before her wedding to Duke Otto Von Seibenheim, Countess Helene Mara flees, on a whim, to Monte Carlo, where she hopes her luck will save her poor financial state. There, Count Rudolph Farriere is taken by her beauty, but she rebuffs him, not even looking at him. Assuming the guise of a hairdresser, he finally succeeds in seeing her, night and morning. Sparks fly, and love ensues - but can she love a lowly hairdresser? As her finances worsen though, the Duke arrives, and his money and social status seem even more enticing. Shunning Rudolph, will her story follow the operatic "unhappy ending", or can she have it all? Written by
The song "Beyond the Blue Horizon," introduced here, became Jeanette MacDonald's theme song for the rest of her life. During World War Ii she changed the line, "Beyond the blue horizon lies the rising sun" to " ... lies the shining sun" because the Rising Sun was the symbol of America's enemy, Japan. See more »
Jeanette MacDonald is referred to as a blonde early on in the dialogue. She was actually a redhead, and no attempt was made to lighten her hair to make her look blonde. Her hair photographed the dark grey red hair usually reproduced as on the black-and-white film used in 1930. See more »
Though a bit flawed, "Monte Carlo" is still one of Ernst Lubitsch's most dynamic and inventive musicals. A follow-up to Lubitsch's delightful "The Love Parade", "Monte Carlo" regains Jeanette MacDonald but unfortunately it lacks Maurice Chevalier whose Gallic, continental charm was one of the things that made "Love Parade" (and also Lubitsch's later sublime musicals - "The Smiling Lieutenant", "One Hour with You" and "The Merry Widow") such a joy to watch.
Still, it has one priceless musical number: Jeanette MacDonald rendition of "Beyond the Blue Horizon" while riding a train - a sequence so inventive and spectacular that you forget the rest of the film. It is powerful enough to make the whole countryside alive with song and elation. The song will stick with you long after you completed watching the film.
Frank Tashlin pays an homage to this sequence in his hilarious 1956 musical "Hollywood or Bust": a number called "A Day in the Country", a duet between Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis.
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