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A photographer for Life magazine comes to London to do a story on a local theater troupe which never missed a performance during World War II. Flashbacks also reveal the backstage love affair between star Rosalind Bruce and a British flyer. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Rita Hayworth was pregnant during production. As a result, the musical numbers were filmed first, before the pregnancy began to show. As filming progressed, great care was taken to hide her growing belly with muffs, furniture and purses. See more »
When Rita is putting on the silver dress, the part in her hair jumps from the side to the middle and back again. See more »
Rita Triumphs In This Tale of Love, War, Music & Dancing!
This is one Rita Hayworth movie that can be considered an underrated gem.
Though the musical score is serviceable and the dancing at times inspired, it is the relationships between the principle characters of a small London Musical Theatre Revue led by star performer Rosalind Bruce (Rita Hayworth), set against the raging London blitz of WWII, that propels this film. The WWII/London/Theatre setting really shapes the mood and atmosphere of the story, giving a 'real world' urgency and poignancy to the film that most "behind the scenes/let's put on a show" musicals of the period lack. The characters each experience the triumph and tragedy and sacrifice of the blitz, all the while trying to stay together and put on their show night after night.
Rita looks ravishing in Technicolor, and gives a performance that is confident and skilled. And, of course, her dancing is in top form. Her wild samba number "You Excite Me" cements her position as one of the Silver Screen's finest dancers. She receives fine support from Marc Platt (who's dance solo at the beginning of the film set to flipping radio stations is stellar) and Janet Blair (watch her and Rita chew up the scenery with their musical number "The Boy I Left Behind") as her best friends and fellow performers. Lee Bowman as her Air Squadron Leader love interest, Florence Bates as the grand dame of the Music Box Theatre where the story unfolds (the small theatre almost another character unto itself), and Leslie Brooks in her small role as a man hungry performer with a heart of gold, round out this excellent cast.
A treat for Rita Hayworth fans and new fans alike.
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