When a young girl is found dead an inspector is sent to investigate a prosperous Yorkshire household. It emerges that each member of the family has a guilty secret - each one is partly responsible for her death.
A man occupies a position of trust with a merchant in an East Asian port. He's sacked when he's caught stealing, but he pretends to commit suicide and a captain he befriended agrees to take him to a secret trading post.
I found this musical decent enough with some good tunes (especially during Charley's stage performances) but failing to make much of an impression.
At first I thought it was because the story had clichéd elements in it that have been seen a million times before, especially when Charley finds that - gasp! - fame and fortune isn't all it's cracked up to be.
But that wasn't the main reason as there have been plenty of great movie musicals full of clichés and obvious story lines.
I think what holds this film back is that it lacks what the best Hollywood musicals of this era had, especially the MGM ones. Namely, a confident sense of style and pizazz and a desire to be noticed.
The style of 'Charley Moon' is all too modest. Take for example the early segment where Charley Moon's father dies. In a top line Hollywood musical of the day, the melodrama from this would be milked for all its worth. Here, it barely registers any impact.
Despite this, it's an OK film. It has some good tunes and is given a level of quality by it's impressive supporting cast (especially Dennis Price). In the lead Max Bygraves is a bit awkward early on but is personable enough and does a solid job overall.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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