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The Eddy Duchin Story (1956)

 -  Biography | Drama | Music  -  21 June 1956 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 1,005 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 6 critic

The life story of the famous pianist and band-leader of the 1930s and 1940s.

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(screenplay), (story)
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Title: The Eddy Duchin Story (1956)

The Eddy Duchin Story (1956) on IMDb 7/10

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Marjorie Oelrichs
Rex Thompson ...
Peter Duchin, Age 12
...
Lou Sherwood
Victoria Shaw ...
Chiquita Wynn
...
Eddy Duchin
Shepperd Strudwick ...
Sherman Wadsworth
Frieda Inescort ...
Edith Wadsworth
...
Mrs. Duchin
...
Leo Reisman
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Storyline

In the late 20's, the talkative newly graduated in pharmacy and aspirant piano player Eddy Duchin comes from Boston to New York expecting to play with the orchestra of Leo Reisman at fancy New York's Central Park Casino. However he had misunderstood the invitation of the maestro and while leaving the place, he meets the wealthy socialite Marjorie Oelrichs that asks Leo Reisman to give a chance to Eddy. He plays in the intermission and becomes a successful piano showman. Two years later, Marjorie and Eddy get married and in the Christmas, Marjorie has a baby, Peter, but she dies after the delivery. Eddy rejects Peter blaming him for the death of Marjorie and only five years later he meets his son. With the World War II, Eddy Duchin breaks up his band and enlists to fight in the war. With the end of the war, Eddy returns to New York with the intention of getting closer to Peter but he sees the boy connected to his friend Chiquita. When Eddy discovers that he has a terminal disease, he ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

21 June 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Eddy Duchin Story  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Both Joan Fontaine and Eva Marie Saint were tested for the role of Marjorie. George Sidney preferred the younger Kim Novak. See more »

Goofs

1950s cars visible in some scenes. The film is set in the 1930s. See more »

Quotes

Eddy Duchin: What I want to know is why! Why do they have to destroy a man twice? You work and work and just when you get... everything. When it gets too good they take it away.
Eddy Duchin: Oh Chiquita, I don't want to die. I don't.
See more »

Connections

References Sabrina (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock-a-Bye Baby
(uncredited)
Music by Effie I. Canning
Played on the trumpet
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Performers
4 February 2007 | by (Virginia Beach) – See all my reviews

Wow, what a mix of bad and good. The good is the music and the amazing period shots of New York. The bad... well just about anything else; its all rather poorly done. The script is particularly offensive; more about that in a moment. The acting is that goofy type which is unnatural, but not quite the unnatural stage style, more of a "read to the camera" style. Novak is pretty, but moves gracelessly.

The story they have chosen to tell is a simple one: we learn to love a man through his ambition, gains, losses, sorrow and regaining of humanity after the war. This is about America after the war, not some pianist. Then sorrow strikes again and he handles it so wonderfully you applaud while crying. At least that's the goal and it probably worked for most viewers when this was new and America was trying to cope with post war loss.

Something closer to the real story would have made a killer movie. Duchin was made famous by his recording that was the first use of the F-work in that medium. His first wife did die, but he was hardly grief-stricken — a famous womanizer. He did leave his boy with Averill Harriman's wife when he went to war. But that was because he was sleeping with her, while her husband was off in England sleeping (and finally marrying) another man's wife. The son of Winston Churchill in fact, so Harriman hardly cared about his wife's affair with a New York celebrity.

Harriman was an amazing character through the period of this story. He, Dulles and Marshall shaped the world after the war in a liberal mold, essentially reforming Europe as a unit and building NATO, which for many decades was a very good thing. His presence through this movie as sort of an avuncular figure would be like having John Kennedy as a butler. The loss of the power-as-sex game and music-as-power thrust sort of waters down the whole thing.

Why do I care? Because Harriman was particularly concerned about rebuilding France, a country that had humiliated itself and had no means to rebuild. It was, as now, an agricultural economy and Harriman couldn't see Americans subsidizing French farmers for decades. So he (his staff, yes Democrats) came up with the ideas of romanticizing Paris and Rome. Make them romantic cities that tourists would visit. They surely were not before the war. Paris had had its day as a center of art but never ever of romance.

The plan was pulled off flawlessly, primarily through subsidies to Hollywood to make films that portrayed Paris romantically. Many of those films were from the same period of this film, an extreme irony. Extreme, you know.

Harriman's first wife, the one playing with Duchin, had cheated on and left her first husband as well, an extremely wealthy fellow who just happened to be the financier of Technicolor which we find our self enjoying in this very film.

Oh well, there is the music, How can you fault any film that starts with Chopin?

Ted's Evaluation -- 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.


15 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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