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At the beginning of the "Bring On The Beautiful Girls" number, several older women are shown. These were women who had actually appeared in the original Ziegfeld Follies on stage. See more »
Towards the end of the "This Heart of Mine" number, as Astaire and Bremer begin to dance back to the palace, dancers in the background (screen left) are clearly struggling to stabilize some of the antler-tree props. See more »
Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.:
Ah... Saturday, September twenty fifth. Another heavenly day. Ah, yes. Always a heavenly day.
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a review which sits comedy, music and parody together
This film is just what it says on the tin, a collection of pieces and sketches similar to those you would have seen in a real Ziegfeld show.
Introduced from Heaven by Ziegfeld himself (William Powell reprising his role of ten years earlier), the acts are rolled out one by one for our appreciation and enjoyment.
High points which spring to mind are Fred Astaire as a jewel thief, charming Lucille Bremer; and as a Chinese n'er do well wishing he could get Bremer the fan she wants. Cyd Charisse and others dancing through bubbles as Kathryn Grayson warbles 'Beauty'. Judy Garland as 'the great lady' mocking Greer Garson. And of course 'The Babbitt and the Bromide' which teams Astaire and Gene Kelly for the first time.
The comedy segments sit less well today and all are too long, however, they're not bad. Keenan Wynn struggles with a dumb telephone operator; Victor Moore has a tightwad lawyer who gets him into jail; Fanny Brice wins the Irish sweepstake; and Red Skelton advertises Guzzler's Gin.
Add Lucille Ball and her cat girls, a touch of La Traviata, and a bevy of lovelies to open and close the show, and you can see why this film was a hit on its first release.
Good for historical interest and the frequent highs, but you might find your attention wandering now and then.
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