IMDb > Wonder Bar (1934)
Wonder Bar
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Wonder Bar (1934) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

User Rating:
7.0/10   440 votes »
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Down 11% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Geza Herczeg (based on the play by) &
Karl Farkas (based on the play by) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Wonder Bar on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
31 March 1934 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Warner Bros.' Wonder Show of the Century!
Plot:
Harry and Inez are a dance team at the Wonder Bar. Inez loves Harry, but he is in love with Liane, the wife of a wealthy business man... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
1 nomination See more »
NewsDesk:
(8 articles)
User Reviews:
Odd Mix Of Vulgarity & Romance See more (21 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Al Jolson ... Al Wonder

Kay Francis ... Liane

Dolores del Rio ... Inez (as Dolores Del Rio)

Ricardo Cortez ... Harry

Dick Powell ... Tommy
Guy Kibbee ... Simpson
Ruth Donnelly ... Mrs. Simpson

Hugh Herbert ... Pratt

Louise Fazenda ... Mrs. Pratt
Hal Le Roy ... Dancer
Fifi D'Orsay ... Mitzi
Merna Kennedy ... Claire
Henry O'Neill ... Richard - the Maitre'd
Robert Barrat ... Captain Hugo Von Ferring
Henry Kolker ... Mr. R.H. Renaud
Spencer Charters ... Pete
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Grace Hayle ... Fat Dowager (scenes deleted)
Demetrius Alexis ... Young Man (uncredited)
William Anderson ... Call Boy (uncredited)
Loretta Andrews ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Louis Ardizoni ... Leon - the Cook (uncredited)
Margaret Carthew ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Hobart Cavanaugh ... Drunk (uncredited)
Emile Chautard ... Pierre - the Concierge (uncredited)
Clay Clement ... Businessman (uncredited)

Gino Corrado ... Second Waiter (uncredited)
Virginia Dabney ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Michael Dalmatoff ... Russian Count (uncredited)

Jane Darwell ... Baroness (uncredited)
Gordon De Main ... Second Detective (uncredited)
Mildred Dixon ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Shirley Dunstead ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Ruth Eddings ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Bill Elliott ... Norman - Man Flirting with Pansy (uncredited)
Eddie Foy Jr. ... Chorus Boy / Angel Measuring Wings (uncredited)
Pauline Garon ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Dick Good ... Page Boy (uncredited)
William Granger ... First Bartender (uncredited)
Robert Graves ... Police Officer (uncredited)
Shep Houghton ... Chorus Boy (uncredited)
Mia Ichioka ... GeeGee (uncredited)
Amo Ingraham ... Hazel - a Chorus Girl (uncredited)

George Irving ... Broker (uncredited)
Alfred P. James ... Night Watchman (uncredited)
Bud Jamison ... Third Bartender (uncredited)
Eddie Kane ... Frank (uncredited)
Edward Keane ... Captain (uncredited)
Joseph La Gue ... Boy (uncredited)
Marie Marks ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Miriam Marlin ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
John Marlowe ... Young Man (uncredited)
Alphonse Martell ... Doorman (uncredited)
Bert Moorhouse ... Joe (uncredited)
Marie Moreau ... Marie - Liane's Maid (uncredited)
Mahlon Norvell ... Artist (uncredited)
Dave O'Brien ... Chorus Boy (uncredited)
Dennis O'Keefe ... Chorus Boy (uncredited)
Henry Otho ... Second Bartender (uncredited)
Gene Perry ... Gendarme (uncredited)
Paul Power ... Chester - Norman's Pal (uncredited)
Donna Mae Roberts ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Rosalie Roy ... Irma - a Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Rolfe Sedan ... First Waiter (uncredited)
Kathryn Sergava ... Ilka (uncredited)
William Stack ... Businessman (uncredited)
Victoria Vinton ... Chorus Girl / Cinderella in 'Don't Say Goodnight' (uncredited)
Renee Whitney ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Lottie Williams ... Wardrobe Woman (uncredited)
Harry Woods ... First Detective (uncredited)

Directed by
Lloyd Bacon 
 
Writing credits
Geza Herczeg (based on the play by) &
Karl Farkas (based on the play by) and
Robert Katscher (based on the play by)

Earl Baldwin (adaptation and screen play)

Cinematography by
Sol Polito (photography)
 
Film Editing by
George Amy (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Jack Okey 
Willy Pogany 
 
Costume Design by
Orry-Kelly (gowns)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
William H. Cannon .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
L. De Angelis .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Frank Flanagan .... chief electrician (uncredited)
Mike Joyce .... second camera operator (uncredited)
Buddy Longworth .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Al Dubin .... music and lyrics by
Leo F. Forbstein .... conductor: Vitaphone Orchestra
Harry Warren .... music and lyrics by
Ray Heindorf .... music arranger (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Busby Berkeley .... numbers created and directed by
Robert Lord .... supervisor (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
84 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Australia:G | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #2699-R) (22 September 1936 for re-release) | USA:TV-PG (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
One scene gave the censors some consternation: A man asks a couple if he can cut into their dance, and while the woman says, "Sure!" and rushes towards him, he dances away with her partner. Upon hearing this, Al Jolson says with a twinkle in his eye: "Boys will be boys!" Warner Brothers refused to cut the scene (and it exists today in the Turner Classic Movies print). At the time, the Production Code was not rigorously enforced. Surprisingly, however, the movie was approved for reissue in 1936 despite this homosexual scene and the fact that someone gets away with murder, both clear violations of the Production Code.See more »
Quotes:
Al Wonder:[rolls eyes as two men dance off together] Boys will be boys, woooo!See more »
Movie Connections:
Edited into Musical Memories (1946)See more »
Soundtrack:
Love Me AgainSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
19 out of 22 people found the following review useful.
Odd Mix Of Vulgarity & Romance, 20 May 2000
Author: Ron Oliver (revilorest@juno.com) from Forest Ranch, CA

Welcome to the WONDER BAR! Your host, Al Wonder (Al Jolson) promises you the finest music & entertainment Paris can offer in this wonderful year of 1934. Our featured dancers, Harry & Inez (Ricardo Cortez & Dolores Del Rio) will thrill you with their passion; they say that Inez adores Harry, but that he, a true gigolo, loves only money. Seated on the sidelines is a wealthy married woman (Kay Francis) who is supposedly giving Harry diamonds for his affections. Al loves Inez, as does his boy bandleader & crooner Tommy (Dick Powell). And if you glance over at the bar you'll see a French Captain (Robert Barrat), bankrupt, disposing of his last cash & valuables, hinting darkly that we should not miss tomorrow morning's newspapers. Al himself will of course entertain us with a selection of tunes sung in his inimitable style. Yes, I think we can promise you an evening you won't forget, full of waltzes & romance, love & hate, murder & suicide! Right this way, mesdames & messieurs!

Released just prior to the imposition of the Production Code, this neglected film is an example of too much talent & not enough taste. Sex in several illicit forms seems to preoccupy much of the dialogue & plot (watch the reaction on Jolie's face as the two young men dance past him). Some of the references are a bit sly, others obscure, but the decadence lingers on...

That having been said, the film does have strengths. Jolson is wonderful to watch. His outsized personality was too big for any screen to hold; nonetheless, his talent to entertain was immense & he doesn't stint here. Francis (she has little to do) & Del Rio are both lovely and Powell is in good voice. The comedy is handled by two American couples, Guy Kibbee & Ruth Donnelley and Hugh Herbert & Louise Fazenda, who bicker and flirt and have almost nothing to do with the rest of the plot.

Al Dubin & Harry Warren provided some good tunes for the picture. Powell sings 'Why Do I Dream Those Dreams?' & 'Wonder Bar' - while Jolson sinks his teeth into 'Welcome To My Wonder Bar/Vive La France.' Busby Berkeley was the dance choreographer and he provides one of his finest creations, 'Don't Say Good-Night' (featuring the talents of Powell, Del Rio & Cortez), with the Berkeley hallmark: identical blonde chorus girls in swirling precision movements filmed from above, this time endlessly magnified by mirrors. It is gorgeous.

On the other hand, Jolson, Berkeley, Dubin & Warren must take responsibility for one of the most outrageous sequences of the decade (looking back with hindsight). 'Goin' To Heaven On a Mule', which makes the Celestial City look like a honky-tonk Harlem populated by the Hall Johnson Choir, is amazingly racist & fascinatingly vulgar, a definite smudge on First National/Warner Bros. reputation.

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