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The Mikado (1939)

Not Rated  |   |  Musical, Comedy  |  1 May 1939 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 453 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 13 critic

The son of the Mikado of Japan, a wandering minstrel, falls for a girl who is engaged to her guardian.

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(libretto based upon the opera by) (as W.S. Gilbert)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Kenny Baker ...
Martyn Green ...
Sydney Granville ...
John Barclay ...
Gregory Stroud ...
Jean Colin ...
Constance Willis ...
Elizabeth Paynter ...
Kathleen Naylor ...
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Storyline

In a mythical Japan, Ko-Ko, a cheap tailor, has been appointed Lord High Executioner and must find someone to execute before the arrival of the ruling Mikado. He lights upon Nanki-Poo, a strolling minstrel who loves the beautiful Yum-Yum. But Yum-Yum is also loved by Ko-Ko, and Nanki-Poo, seeing no hope for his love, considers suicide. Ko-Ko offers to solve both their problems by executing Nanki-Poo, and an agreement is reached whereby Ko-Ko will allow Nanki-Poo to marry Yum-Yum for one month, at the end of which Nanki-Poo will be executed, in time for the arrival of the Mikado. But what Ko-Ko doesn't know is that Nanki-Poo is the son of the Mikado and has run away to avoid a betrothal to an old harridan named Katisha. The arrival of the Mikado brings all the threads of the tale together. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Musical | Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 May 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A mikádó  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sir William S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan's comic opera "The Mikado or, The Town of Titipu" was their ninth of fourteen collaborations. It opened on March 14, 1885 in London at the Savoy Theatre and ran for 672 performances. See more »

Connections

Version of Was wissen Sie von Titipu? (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

Willow, Tit-willow
("On a Tree By a River") (1885) (uncredited)
Music by Arthur Sullivan
Lyrics by William S. Gilbert
Performed by Martyn Green
See more »

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User Reviews

 
I'm of two minds about this one
3 March 2001 | by (St. Louis, Missouri) – See all my reviews

Admittedly, there are some magnificent performences here. Ko-Ko is truly delightful, and probably quite canonical. However, the cuts and interpolations made to turn the play into a movie are absolutely vile. Several totally uncessary scenes are added, songs are given to the wrong characters, and several of the best are cut. What's The Mikado without "I've Got A Little List" or Katisha's magnificent "Oh, Living I" aria? I'd also be more comfortable with classic Japanese costumes (which, BTW, Gilbert insisted on) rather than these exaggerated, silly versions of them. Sigh. The D'Oyley Carte association with this film led me to expect an absolutely authentic production, and I was terribly disappointed.


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