MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 14,630 this week

Serenade (1956)

 -  Drama  -  23 March 1956 (USA)
5.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.9/10 from 284 users  
Reviews: 23 user | 4 critic

Damon Vincenti, a young vineyard worker, has a beautiful tenor voice and dreams of becoming a great opera singer. He debuts at Lardelli's Italian restaurant in San Francisco, where he is ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 52 images
created 26 Jun 2011
 
list image
a list of 38 titles
created 25 Nov 2011
 
a list of 7145 titles
created 20 Oct 2012
 
a list of 826 titles
created 29 Oct 2012
 
a list of 35 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Serenade (1956)

Serenade (1956) on IMDb 5.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Serenade.

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
...
Damon Vincenti
...
Kendall Hale
...
Juana Montes (as Sarita Montiel)
...
Charles Winthrop
...
Maestro Marcatello
Harry Bellaver ...
Tonio
...
Marco Roselli
Silvio Minciotti ...
Lardelli
Frank Puglia ...
Manuel Montes
...
Everett Carter
Licia Albanese ...
Desdemona in 'Otello'
Jean Fenn ...
Soprano in San Francisco
Edit

Storyline

Damon Vincenti, a young vineyard worker, has a beautiful tenor voice and dreams of becoming a great opera singer. He debuts at Lardelli's Italian restaurant in San Francisco, where he is spotted by Kendall Hale, a society girl who enjoys launching young artists while making them her lovers before dumping them after use. Damon is no exception to the rule: he becomes famous but Kendall leaves him abruptly. He feels so affected that he must give up singing. In Mexico, where he has got back in touch with his inner self, Damon meets Juana Mont├Ęs.They are happy and get married. But Kendall is still around... Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Thrill of His Voice! Thrill of a Great Story! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

23 March 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Serenade  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Warnercolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Quotes

Damon Vincenti: Hey! Are you hiring a singer or a bookkeeper?
Lardelli: Oho, he IS a tenor!
See more »

Connections

Remade as The Broken Disk (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Dio Ti Giocondi
(uncredited)
from "Otello"
Music by Giuseppe Verdi
Libretto by Arrigo Boito
Performed by Mario Lanza and Licia Albanese
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
An underrated treasure
5 February 2003 | by (New Zealand) – See all my reviews

Serenade is far and away Lanza's most interesting movie. True, The Great Caruso is a more accessible film (and the best introduction to Lanza), but Serenade packs a far greater punch. This is melodrama to the nth degree, and fittingly it contains some of the finest dramatic singing ever recorded.

Let's get the quibbles out of the way first. Injudicious editing has made some of the scenes appear silly and illogical. The speed with which Lanza becomes obsessed with Joan Fontaine seems absurd, and the ending could have been so much better. Would that the scenarists had had the courage to follow more closely the James Cain novel on which this movie is based, but then again, this was Hollywood, 1955. Had the movie been made without the censorship constraints of, say, a mere ten years later, it could have been a masterpiece. All I can say is, read the novel and you'll see what I mean!

I would also criticize Anthony Mann's direction at times. Re-takes of some of Lanza's hammier moments should definitely have been made, and the film lacks (at times) the full dramatic treatment that its subject deserves. Re-takes of Lanza's Nessun Dorma and Di Quella Pira should also have been made. In both arias he sounds uncharacteristically strained, and in each case a second take would have sorted out the problem.

Quibbles aside, Lanza's acting is often outstanding (the Ave Maria scene, for instance, is a revelation). Vincent Price, Lanza's acid-tongued and hilarious manager in the movie, later remarked off-screen how impressed he was with the tenor's dedicated approach to his acting. Sarita Montiel is also outstanding in her role as a fiery Mexican bullfighter's daughter, providing Lanza with his best-ever leading lady.

But what makes this film a vocal masterpiece is Lanza's singing. La Danza, Torna a Surriento, Amor Ti Vieta, O Paradiso, the Otello Monologue (Dio! Mi potevi scagliar...) and the heart-rending Lamento Di Federico are all astonishing feats of singing. By 1955 Lanza's voice had darkened into a lirico spinto tenor that often borders on the dramatic. It is rare indeed to hear a tenor with such baritonal fullness AND a ringing tenorial top. (Eat your heart out, Placido Domingo!) Lanza For my money, the Otello Monologue is the pinnacle of Lanza's operatic legacy, and the finest recording of this aria. The scene in which it appears is also brilliantly acted by Lanza. As the critic John Cargher would later remark, Lanza's rendition of the Otello Monologue alone "would assure him of immortality."

All criticism aside, Serenade remains a source of immense pleasure to me, and it is richly deserving of far wider appreciation.


14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Official DVD finally released derekmcgovern
Joan Fontaine marhefka
Discuss Serenade (1956) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?