Marine, James Murfin, is unaware of Icelandic customs. When he flirts with Katina her Icelandic family take his actions as a proposal of marriage to Katina. Desperately wanting out, James ...
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William A. Seiter
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Marine, James Murfin, is unaware of Icelandic customs. When he flirts with Katina her Icelandic family take his actions as a proposal of marriage to Katina. Desperately wanting out, James gets his buddy to help him. Good Luck! Written by
Some of 'Katina' floats beautifully, some of it sinks badly
Sonja Henie was always watchable, even in her weakest films, and a marvel at ice skating.
Her filmography was very much a mixed bag. There are charmers and gems such as 'Sun Valley Serenade', 'Second Fiddle' and 'Lovely to Look At'. However, there are also wildly uneven and average films such as 'It's a Pleasure', 'Everything Happens at Night' and 'One in a Million'. Have yet to see a film of hers, though there is more to see, that's less than mediocre or terrible.
'Katina' (or 'Iceland') falls more in the latter category. Certainly not a terrible film, but is a case of some elements working far better than others. Some elements such as the music, Henie, the production values and the ice skating float beautifully, others such as the comedy, the romance, the script and the story sink badly.
It's beautifully photographed and the production values are suitably elegant and couldn't have been more perfectly complemented by the photography. Another high point is the music which is delightful and every bit as delightfully played and sung. "There Will Never Be Another You" is particularly note-worthy. John Payne sings gloriously, while Sterling Holloway is effective in his role as is Felix Besshart.
The best things about it are Henie, who charms as an actress and dazzles in the ice skating routines, and the ice skating sequences, which are full of energy and grace. Most envious on both counts.
On the other hand, the story is little more than (very) thinly plotted and very dull filler, with a romance that rarely goes anywhere and betraying a lack of chemistry. The comedy is similarly as limp as a kipper, especially with Jack Oakie who tries to compensate for that and instead overdoes it.
Payne has little to do and is rather wooden, while the pacing and the direction are leaden.
All in all, an uneven film that floats beautifully with some elements and sinks badly in others. 5/10 Bethany Cox
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