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The Merry Widow (1934)

Passed | | Musical, Comedy, Romance | 2 November 1934 (USA)
The small kingdom of Marshovia has a little problem. The main tax-payer, the wealthy widow Sonia (who pays 52 0f the taxes) has left for Paris So Count Danilo is sent to Paris, to stop her ... See full summary »

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(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Operating under royal orders, a count must woo a young and wealthy widow in order to save a kingdom from bankruptcy.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Una Merkel ...
Queen
George Barbier ...
King
Minna Gombell ...
Marcelle
Ruth Channing ...
Lulu
...
Orderly
...
Valet
Herman Bing ...
Zizipoff
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Storyline

The small kingdom of Marshovia has a little problem. The main tax-payer, the wealthy widow Sonia (who pays 52 0f the taxes) has left for Paris So Count Danilo is sent to Paris, to stop her from getting married by a stranger, so that the danger of removing the money is banned. But this is not that easy as the ambassador in Paris has planned. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The musical that set all the standards. See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

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Language:

|

Release Date:

2 November 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La viuda alegre  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Censors from the film industry's Production Code Administration objected to a scene at Maxim's in which Danilo carries Sonia to a couch, drops her there and then sits beside her. They only passed the scene when the stars managed to contort their bodies so she could keep both feet on the floor. That taken care of, PCA head Joseph Breen passed the film. See more »

Quotes

Count Danilo: Are you pretty? Or beautiful?
Sonia: Gorgeous.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Merry Widow (1952) See more »

Soundtracks

If Widows Are Rich
(1905) (uncredited)
Music by Franz Lehár
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
Sung by Jeanette MacDonald
See more »

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User Reviews

Give yourself over to absolute pleasure!
2 September 1999 | by (Canberra, Australia) – See all my reviews

This film is nothing short of glorious. Before films decided they had to be realistic they had style, and Lubitsch was the style king. Everything about this film is sumptuous and beautiful, and the Oscar winning art direction of Cedric Gibbons and Fredric Hope is truly magnificent. Not bad either are the gowns of Adrian.

MacDonald and Chevalier are excellent together, there is great support from Edward Everett Horton - and who will ever forget the magic scenes between Chevalier and the king and the queen - irresitably played by Una Merkel and George Barbier. The script is witty and a little naughty ("I know what to do with her but I'm too old"), the cinematography breath-taking and the music gorgeous.

But the star of the show is Lubitsch - the mass waltz scene is magnificent, the depiction of MacDonald's mourning clothes (all black - even the dog!) and their transformation into white is astonishing and, just when you think the plot is running out of steam, he gives us an hilarious ending that is unforgettable.

If you ever get a chance to see this on the big screen, run don't walk to the cinema. A perfect 10.


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