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The Eddy Duchin Story (1956)

Approved  |   |  Biography, Drama, Music  |  21 June 1956 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 1,140 users  
Reviews: 36 user | 15 critic

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

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(screenplay) (as Samuel Taylor) , (story)
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Eddy Duchin
...
Marjorie Oelrichs
Victoria Shaw ...
Chiquita Wynn
...
Lou Sherwood
Rex Thompson ...
Peter Duchin, Age 12
Mickey Maga ...
Peter Duchin, Age 5
Shepperd Strudwick ...
Sherman Wadsworth
Frieda Inescort ...
Edith Wadsworth
...
Mrs. Duchin
...
Leo Reisman
John Mylong ...
Mr. Duchin
Gregory Gaye ...
Philip
Warren Hsieh ...
Native Boy
Richard H. Cutting ...
George - Destroyer Captain
Carlyle Mitchell ...
Marjorie's Doctor
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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

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 June 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Geliebt in alle Ewigkeit  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The characters of "Mr. and Mrs. Sherman Wadsworth" are fictionalized versions of the real-life Mr. and Mrs. W. Averall Harriman, Marjorie Duchin's uncle and aunt. Averell Harriman was the heir to his father's, George Herriman, railroad fortune, and devoted most of his life to public service, including stints as US ambassador to the Soviet Union and to the Paris Peace talks during the Vietnam War. At the time "The Eddy Duchin Story" was released (1956), Harriman was in the midst of his term (1955-1959) as Governor of New York, and was a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination that year. 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

Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Tyrone Power (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Nocturne Op. 9, No. 2 in E Flat Major
(uncredited)
Music by Frédéric Chopin
Played by Eddy on piano
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
enjoyable tearjerker
6 December 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This was one of my favorite movies as a kid - not only does it have great musical sequences, but it is a real tearjerker. I read recently that this movie just about ruined the life of Peter Duchin, Eddy's son. I can't imagine what it must be like to be a character in such a popular film that shows up on AMC just before you play your next gig.

George Sidney did a beautiful job of directing, and no expense was spared for this Technicolor movie filmed on location in New York. There are so many great shots of the city -- if you're familiar with New York, watching the movie is all that much more enjoyable. The film appears to follow the structure of Duchin's actual life but how much is fact and how much is fiction is hard to say. What is fact is that Carmen Cavallero does a divine job dubbing the piano, and Tyrone Power's fingerings are excellent. He apparently worked at them night and day, and the result was worth it.

There are some wonderful scenes in the film, one of the best being when Duchin talks about his love for Marjorie to Chiquita, who is about to become his new wife. It's such a beautiful monologue about how you can be young and love someone the way he did Marjorie only once, watch your parents age only once etc. - needless to say, hearing that little speech today means more to me now than it did when I was 14. Another great scene is Eddy and a little boy playing chopsticks on a rickety piano in wartime; and, of course, Eddy talking to his son at the playground toward the end of the film.

Tyrone Power knew Eddy Duchin personally as he knew just about everyone, and his portrayal is masterful. In the beginning, however, he's the young Eddy and it's obvious that he's way too old to be fresh out of college. Power was 41 at the time of the filming, and it wasn't the 41 of 2006 - it was a 1950s, three-pack-a-day, party all night, I fought in World War II 41 - hello. You would have thought that the lighting man and cameramen would have worked just a tad harder - we're talking about Tyrone Power here, not some nobody. A little star treatment, please. Instead, Power ends up looking younger in the second half of the film. Ridiculous.

There are lots of posts about Kim Novak, who is very beautiful though vapid as Marjorie, but not much mention of the beautiful Australian actress, Victoria Shaw, who played Chiquita. Like Power and Duchin, she died young. She does an excellent job in the movie. One of the comments suggested the character of Chiquita is fictional; in fact, Duchin's widow was indeed Chiquita Wynn Duchin, and in 1947, Peter Duchin left the Harrimans to live with his father and his stepmother.

Rex Thompson plays the young Peter Duchin and though he makes a game try at hiding his British accent, he sounds British. As a young adult, Thompson was a handsome and fine actor - he worked into his twenties, and then faded from view. In real life, Peter Duchin went on to marry Margaret Sullavan's daughter, Brooke Hayward.

It's hard to hold back the tears during "The Eddy Duchin Story," so don't try. Enjoy the romance and be enveloped in a more gentile world where people had some class, and listen to that great music.


37 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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