Aviator and band leader Roger Bond is forever getting his group fired for flirting with the lady guests. When he falls for Brazilian beauty Belinha de Rezende it appears to be for real, ... See full summary »
Aviator and band leader Roger Bond is forever getting his group fired for flirting with the lady guests. When he falls for Brazilian beauty Belinha de Rezende it appears to be for real, even though she is already engaged. His Yankee Clippers band is hired to open the new Hotel Atlântico in Rio and Roger offers to fly Belinha part way home. After a mechanical breakdown and forced landing, Roger is confident and makes his move, but Belinha plays hard to get. She can't seem to decide between Roger and her fiance Júlio. When performing the airborne production number to mark the Hotel's opening, Júlio gets some intriguing ideas... Written by
Gary Jackson <email@example.com>
Despite his obvious on-screen chemistry in dancing with Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire was reluctant to make a second movie with her. He had previously been part of a dance duo with his sister, Adele Astaire, but wanted to establish himself as a solo dancer. After Flying Down to Rio (1933), Astaire sent a note to his agent about Rogers. "I don't mind making another picture with her, but as for this team idea, it's out! I've just managed to live down one partnership and I don't want to be bothered with any more." But when the critics praised the Astaire-Rogers pairing in "Rio," Astaire was persuaded, and he and Rogers soon made the second film in their partnership, The Gay Divorcee (1934). See more »
The violinist in the section where Fred is working with a group of inexperienced girl dancers has his bow set between the strings and thee back of his violin. At the end of the number, the bow is used correctly. See more »
Flying Down to Rio will always be best known for being the movie that first paired Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, but, believe me, its worth goes far beyond just that stunning accomplishment. The lead actor is Gene Raymond, who was one of the funniest actors in early Hollywood. My other favorite Raymond movie is Hitchcock's only foray into straight comedy, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, where he starred opposite Carole Lombard and was more than up to it. Raymond's female opposite here is Delores de Rio, an actress with whom I am unfamiliar, but, man, is she a beauty. Astaire plays Raymond's best friend and cohort and Rogers plays a singer who tours with them. The film is wonderfully witty and actually very inventive. The editor goes a little crazy with the different types of swipes he uses throughout the film, but they're still neat. It doesn't bother me much that the filmmakers' experiments don't always work. I'm just happy they were trying new things. The cinematography is often great and much more unique than in other RKO musicals. The music is marvelous, especially the show-stopping Carioca (as opposed to Karaoke!), which seems to last forever, but in a good way! This is the number with the Astaire and Rogers dance. The other dancers in the scene are also wonderful, and the editing of that number is particularly amazing. The climactic musical sequence is as amazing as it is silly: seemingly hundreds of women dancing on the wings of flying planes. It's meant to be entertainment for the people below, but, well, the intricate movements of the girls could never have been seen on the ground (reminiscent of the Busby Berkeley number in 42nd Street where the camera shoots the dancers' pattern from above). Again, the editing here is simply remarkable. I can only imagine that the daring stunts perpetrated in the scene, though obviously fake, would have stunned the hell out of an audience in 1933! Today, in the 21st Century, Flying Down to Rio plays as one of the greatest pieces of fluff ever produced. 10/10.
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