Nina Maria Azara is the beautiful and alluring singing spy for Spain during the Napoleonic Wars. Her mission is to seduce French Officers, in order for them to reveal Napolean's intentions ...
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Robert Z. Leonard,
W.S. Van Dyke
Nina Maria Azara is the beautiful and alluring singing spy for Spain during the Napoleonic Wars. Her mission is to seduce French Officers, in order for them to reveal Napolean's intentions toward Spain. She is sent to Bayonne, France to gather military secrets. Prior to this, she meets, Don Diego while performing at a club. Unknown to her, Don Diego is actually Captain Andre, who is sent to Spain to spy on her. While in France, Nina discovers Diego's true identity, only after she has fallen in love with him. Nina Maria outwits her potential captors and returns to Spain, and goes into hiding. Napoleon's troops invade Spain, resulting in Nina's capture. In a strange twist of fate, Nina and Captain Andre are reunited, but, the 2 nations are now at war... Written by
The song "Donkey Serenade" was not in the original stage production. It was written for the film, but the music was adapted from the song "Chansonette", from the stage version of "The Firefly". See more »
In one scene, women dance to a piece by Russian composer Korsakov. He was born in 1844, decades after Napoleon's era. See more »
Romance, Political Intrigue and the beautiful Jeanette MacDonald
France and England are at war. Napoleon has placed troops in Spain "to protect the Spanish" in case England invades.
There is a beautiful cantina singer (and dancer!) named Nina Maria (Jeanette MacDonald) whom men fight over. She works as a spy for Spain. When Napoleon invites Ferdinand--who appears guileless--to France for a meeting, Nina Maria must leave for France immediately to determine if Napoleon's intentions are honorable.
She is pursued there by Don Diego (Allan Jones), a man smitten by the senorita. Along the way, he tries to charm her by singing "The Donkey Serenade"--one of the most memorable moments in the film.
When they arrive in Bayonne, France, things get complicated. The senorita discovers someone is on to her. The love story becomes more political as Nina Maria must make alliances based on trust. Will she let her heart guide her actions? What is Napoleon's true objective?
The two leads are excellent. Much of the surrounding cast portray military characters and they are very strong.
The lavish sets and a large number of extras give the film a feeling of richness, as when Joseph Napoleon and his military escort ride into Madrid.
Part romance, part political intrigue, "The Firefly" entertains while Jeanette MacDonald shines.
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