Schani, Johan Strauss Jr., is forced by his father to forget music and to work in a bakery. Here he falls in love with Resi. The girl gets very jealous when a rich and beautiful contessa asks Schani to write a waltz for her. Schani writes and plays it, but he is always loyal to his girlfriend. Written by
Claudio Sandrini <email@example.com>
Alfred Hitchcock said about this film " . . . naturally every cut in the film was worked out on script before shooting begins. But more than that, the musical cuts were worked out, too." In certain sequences the images were deliberately cut to conform to the rhythm of the music. Frequently, Hitchcock adds, music can supplement cutting, more especially in quiet scenes where its comment on mood and tone can sometimes be more subtle than the interplay of images which is so important in moments of violence: "Film music and cutting have a great deal in common. The purpose of both is to create tempo and mood of the scene. And, just as the ideal cutting is the kind you don't notice as cutting, so with music". See more »
The first marriage of Johann Strauss Jr. was to the singer Henrietta Trefz, who was not a baker's daughter. See more »
In 1933 Hitchcock found himself without a picture to direct and signed on for this unlikely choice of a musical just so he could keep working. That being the case, it probably helps explain why it doesn't seem to have a Hitchcock feel to it or any of the elements you might otherwise expect from the master of suspense. I don't think his heart was really in it. The term musical is a little loosely used as really there are only the Strauss's waltzes for music as there was no money in the budget for any other music. So no one breaks out into song for no reason in this picture. Other than the fact it doesn't seem like a Hitchcock movie, it's a nice little story about the younger Strauss struggling for the respect of his father with a nice bit of romance and jealousy thrown in on the side. The most amusing scene for me was when the younger Strauss was coming up with the music for his waltz at the bakery. I also enjoyed the opening scene of the fire brigade racing to a fire and the "rescue" of the damsel. Apparently there wasn't much of a budget for special effects, because we never actually see the fire. A pleasant enough film, just not very Hitchcockian.
*** (Out of 4)
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