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Humoresque (1946)

Approved | | Drama, Music, Romance | 25 December 1946 (USA)
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A classical musician from the slums is sidetracked by his love for a wealthy, neurotic socialite.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Joan Chandler ...
Tom D'Andrea ...
...
Ruth Nelson ...
Esther Boray
...
Monte Loeffler
...
Victor Wright
Richard Gaines ...
Bauer
...
Rozner
...
Paul Boray as a Child (as Bobby Blake)
Tommy Cook ...
...
Eddie
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Storyline

Paul Boray comes from a working class background. He has been interested in the violin since he was a child, which his father disliked since he felt it a waste of money, but which his mother supported. Into his adult life, Paul wants to become a concert violinist, and although he shows talent, he does not have the right connections to make it into the concert performance world, much like his longtime friend, virtuoso pianist Sid Jeffers, and cellist Gina Romney, both who, like Paul, train with the National Institute Orchestra. Gina and Paul have a connection with each other, Gina who confesses her love for him. While performing at a party with Sid, Paul meets Helen and Victor Wright, their hosts. Victor is a perceptive but self-admittedly weak man, while his wife Helen is strong minded but insecure which manifests itself as neurosis. She constantly tries to forget about her unhappy life by excessive alcohol consumption. Helen becomes Paul's benefactress, which ultimately results in a ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE NEW WARNERS ACHIEVEMENT - One Of The Greatest Of Them All! (original poster) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

De amor también se muere  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,164,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 2013 on Piers Morgan Tonight (2011), to promote his autobiography, Robert Blake related that when he was playing John Garfield as a boy in this film, there was a scene he could not get right. Garfield cleared the set and directed Blake himself. After the scene was finished, Garfield told the nine-year-old. "Robert, remember this for the rest of your life. Your life is a rehearsal. Your performance is real." See more »

Goofs

Don McGuire plays Teddy, the proprietor of Teddy's Bar, although his character is listed in the closing credits as Eddie. See more »

Quotes

Helen Wright: Don't you like martinis? They're an acquired taste, like Ravel.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are presented on a book as someone turns the pages. See more »

Connections

Version of Humoresque (1920) See more »

Soundtracks

My Heart Stood Still
(uncredited)
From the Broadway musical "A Connecticut Yankee"
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
Music by Richard Rodgers
Copyright 1927 Harms Inc.
Performed by Peg La Centra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Splendid performances and music
13 August 2006 | by (Tulsa OK) – See all my reviews

It's fun sometimes to watch a movie, and mentally juxtapose it in your mind with another you've seen. In "Humoresque," for example, watch the part where Paul (John Garfield) is delivering his major violin performance, while his wealthy, possessive patron, Helen (Joan Crawford), sits in her expensive box (his mother and "girlfriend" are in the cheaper seats) in a sensuous, almost orgasmic state as she watches him. This scene is depicted as graphically as the constrictions imposed on films in the mid-40's would allow - narrow boundaries compared with even daytime television today. Now visualize Michael Douglas and Sharon Stone from "Basic Instinct." Instead of being a detective and author/murder suspect, respectively, Michael is on-stage like Paul, playing his heart out, and Sharon is the wealthy patron in the audience. Now imagine what Sharon might do, and the camera show, in "her" sensuous reaction to his performance: not a bad vision, eh?

This film IS an outstanding example of the "noir" qualities which were a hallmark of the 30's to the early 50's - from the earlier stages of talking pictures, through the depression and post-WW II years. Joan Crawford was one of the two best (along with Bette Davis) at portraying this type of cold, possessive, and thoroughly selfish, powerful female presence. From later revelations about her real life, it was probably due less to her acting prowess than one imagined at that time. And Garfield played the tough, yet easily-manipulated, handsome male "pawn" to perfection - as the fore-mentioned Michael Douglas has done in the present.

Watch this movie for the outstanding performances of two icons of the film's era. It also represents, in my opinion, one of the three best films for the lead characters' music, presented within 10 years after WW II - each with characters meeting unhappy ends. There is, of course, the great Isaac Stern's music here. Ten years later, another matinée idol, Tyrone Power, starred as the title character in "The Eddy Duchin Story," with the gorgeous Kim Novak, and Carmen Cavallero's talented piano offerings. In about the mid-point between these two movies, in 1950, Kirk Douglas was Rick Martin in "Young Man With a Horn," based largely of the meteoric, talented career of the great trumpet player, Bix Biederbecke, whose life ended at age 28 - but who was so talented he is well-remembered nearly 75 years later; Harry James' playing in this film is comparable to Stern's and Cavallero's in the other two, and Lauren Bacall and Doris Day are there as Kirk's love interests, the naughty girl and good girl, respectively. Watch these three movies in the order made; you'll be exposed to great music, and three all-time great performers providing music via their respective instruments - as well as some of the great stars in cinema history. And the musical finale from the Duchin movie will bring a tear to virtually anyone's eyes.


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Fantastic movie! pepe58season
I enjoyed this movie, but... PabloDuganheim
O Levant keeps things light.... ksf-2
girl on piano, what song? alydar21
Garfield's playing vientomadera
The songs performed by Peg La Centra as84
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