King Louis XIV has without his knowledge a twin brother, Philippe, but when he is told, he immediately locks up his brother in the Bastille. The king wants to increase his popularity and ... See full summary »
Patricia O'Grady is the daughter of Irish Vaudeville performer, Rosie O'Grady, and is being raised along with her sisters by her father who believes the Vaudeville life contributed to his ... See full summary »
Brendan O'Malley arrives at the Mexican home of old flame Belle Breckenridge to find her married to a drunkard getting ready for a cattle drive to Texas. Hot on O'Malley's heels is lawman ... See full summary »
On a Japanese-occupied island during World War II, only two soldiers remain alive after a mission attempt goes horribly wrong. Trapped on the island, they must escort a scientist and his ... See full summary »
Former seaman Clinton Jones now works at a lowly job. His daughter Ruth wants to become an actress. Clinton gets fired and Ruth rejects the advances of Fred Whitmarsh. Her father gives her ... See full summary »
This musical biopic chronicles the vaudeville-to-Broadway story of 1920s' star Marilyn Miller (June Haver). From her start on the boards in Findlay, Ohio, Marilyn sings and dances her way ... See full summary »
Princess Karjan promises pirate captain Edri-Al-Gardian a fabulous reward if he helps her regain her lost kingdom of Misurata from Malek. When the latter destroys Gardian's armada, Karjan ... See full summary »
This package for comedy and the musical numbers has Luke Brown being drugged by the gangster operators of the swank Boathouse Inn; most notably Roxie a sexy pickpocket. Brown has ... See full summary »
Diane de Poitiers is in a childless marriage with count de Breze. When he is charged with treason, Diane visits king Francis I to successfully plead for her husband's life, something that start a rumor that she has offered her own services in return. Her husband reject her, leading Francis to ask her to come to the royal court to teach prince Henry how to be a gentleman. The prince and Diane fall in love and she becomes the prince's mistress, something that makes his wife Catherine de Medici her enemy. When the prince becomes the king of France, Diane is wielding considerable influence over him. Written by
The celebrated French prophet and court astrologer Nostradamus is conspicuous by his absence, in name, in this Hollywood version of history which omits his name, although not his character, attributed to "Ruggieri", a part played by Sir Cedric Hardwicke in this film. See more »
Early in the film, count Louis de Breze claims that he and Diane de Poitier had no children. Their marriage was not childless, they had two daughters, born 1515 and 1518. See more »
Lana Turner was a busy actress in the mid-Fifties, appearing in "The Sea Chase" at Warner Brothers, with John Wayne; in Twentieth-Century Fox's lavish remake of "The Rains Came," newly titled "The Rains of Ranchipur," co-starring with Richard Burton; and in her second-to-last at Metro, her long-time home studio, "The Prodigal," one of M-G-M's most expensive made-in-Hollywood spectacles. All were handsomely mounted in CinemaScope and color and all were at least moderately entertaining as well as flattering to the blonde beauty of their leading lady, "Luscious Lana." By the time "Diane" was being lensed on the Culver City soundstages in 1955, M-G-M was in straitened financial circumstances, though one would never know it by observing the deluxe production values liberally applied in the making of this costumer. One month after this picture's release in early 1956, Lana ended her eighteen year association with M-G-M and, for her, it was back to Twentieth for 1957's "Peyton Place" (and a Best Actress Oscar nomination) and thence to Universal-International where, in 1959, Lana and producer Ross Hunter began a run of some extraordinary good luck at the box office, beginning with the ultra-glossy updated remake of "Imitation of Life."
"Diane" provided Lana with a regal departure from M-G-M. All of the elements were liberally provided by M-G-M to support Lana's abilities and beauty. The property was originally planned as a Greta Garbo vehicle some years before; the eventual script was penned by Christopher Isherwood, from a story, departing from historical exactitude, as has always been Hollywood custom, by John Erskine; and visual elements were assigned to the studio's best, including costume designer Water Plunkett, who dressed Lana in a profusion of elaborate black gowns, since Diane is frequently in mourning for one noble or another as the story proceeds to the fadeout. Miklos Rozsa's score is one of his better efforts, sounding a bit less derivative of some of his earlier efforts at musically framing stories with historical settings. Additionally Lana's costars all turn in very professional work, with Marisa Pavan (the sister of the ill-fated actress Pier Angeli) especially effective as Diane's nemesis, Catherine de Medici. As an example of M-G-M's luxurious style of filmmaking, even while the studio teetered on the edge of bankruptcy, this is the kind of entertainment that is rarely reproduced in these sensation-seeking times.
The VHS version is no doubt "formatted" so, unless you are content to wait for a scheduling of this one on Turner Classic Movies, where it most likely would be letterboxed, "Caveat emptor!"
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