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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The plot centers around the composition of the "Blue Danube" waltz and its place in the rivalry between Johann Strauss Jr. and his father. While the rivalry between them was real, the "Blue Danube" was composed in 1866; Johann Strauss Sr. died in 1849, and hence could not have been late to the premiere of the "Blue Danube," since he was "late" already. See more »
Strauss's Great Waltz will go down as your most atypical Alfred Hitchcock film. Mainly because at this time he was not an icon in the film profession but a contract director Gaumont-British Pictures. The Hitchcock stamp is definitely not on this one.
But it is the only musical in his career so you would think something better would have come from it, especially since he had the United Kingdom's number one musical star at the time Jessie Matthews. Who has no real musical numbers, talk about strange. Her singing and dancing talents may have been left on the cutting room floor.
The story was covered far better in MGM's high gloss film, The Great Waltz. Young Johann Strauss, Jr. is considered by his father to be the least promising of his offspring and the senior Strauss Edmund Gwenn ridicules his efforts at composing at every opportunity. Young Strauss who is Esmond Knight in this film has even gone to work in a bakery, in real life Strauss wanted his son to be a banker.
Countess Fay Compton however encourages Knight's genius and we all know what happened after that.
The musical with book and lyrics by Guy Bolton had a nice run on the London Stage. Obviously Hitchcock just didn't have his heart in this assignment and sadly the results show.
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