A rich, young beauty, Louise Durant, follows the man she loves and hopes to marry to Zurich where he studies violin at the conservatory. A piano student at the conservatory falls madly in ... See full summary »
A rich, young beauty, Louise Durant, follows the man she loves and hopes to marry to Zurich where he studies violin at the conservatory. A piano student at the conservatory falls madly in love with Louise. The violinist loves his music first and Louise second. The pianist loves Louise first and his music second. Louise must ultimately choose which man she wants. Written by
No, it's not an excellent movie overall. But it's good, visually beautiful, fun, romantic, and has outstanding music. All three leads: Elizabeth Taylor, John Ericson, and Vittorio Gassman, give very good performances and are the definition of what today we call "eye candy."
Some aspects of the plot are actually realistic. You still see women who look to find their identities primarily through their men and expect a man to "make them happy" rather than be responsible for their OWN happiness. And as someone who was more than once involved with an artistic type, a "performer," I can tell you there is some truth in the characters played by Ericson and Gassman.
My point: there is melodrama here, but also grains of realism which give the film some substance. And you have to remember, the movie is set in the early 50s. This works as a period piece, displaying culture, styles, values, and gender roles of that time.
The instrument-playing which is acted by Gassman and Ericson is outstanding, and you feel like you have the best seat at wonderful performances of classical music, only you did not have to buy a ticket. I did not know who Michael Rabin, the actual violinist, was until I saw this film. Now I am aware he was possibly the greatest violinist of all time. HIS real life story would make an incredible movie!
I don't know why Gassman and Ericson did not catch on and become bigger stars in America. Perhaps because this film was not a big hit? John Ericson was in the successful film "Bad Day at Black Rock," but he did not have a sympathetic part so it did not boost his career as a leading man. Too bad,he'd have been a great leading man for many 50s and 60s films. Gassman fortunately did find leading man roles before and after this film, but mostly in Italian films which I don't have access to.
There is an absurd "over the top" scene in a café early on, and obviously the film was not shot on location, but even so, if you like 50s films you will enjoy this one, especially if you like classical music and looking at gorgeous hunks and gorgeous Elizabeth Taylor.
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