The curtain opens; behind it are two pianos where Charles Bourne and Phil Ellis, billed as the Music Boxes, are seated playing. After a few bars, Blossom Seeley and Bennie Fields enter - ... See full summary »
Detective Guy Johnson's client, Willie Heywood is framed for murder and while Guy hides him so he can catch the real killer, both of them are nabbed by the police, tried, convicted and ... See full summary »
W.S. Van Dyke
Lawyer Thomas Farrell has made a career defending crooks in trials. He has never realized that there is a downside to his success, until he meets the dancer Vicki Gayle. She makes him ... See full summary »
Wealthy Brice Wayne enters West Point and, though he does well on the football field, angers fellow cadets with his arrogance. Disciplined by the coach he yells "To hell with the Corps!" ... See full summary »
George and Gracie enter an elegant drawing room, looking everywhere for something. Turns out, they're looking for the audience, and when George spots the camera, they start in on their ... See full summary »
In this Pete Smith Specialty, Dr. Harold E. Edgerton demonstrates stroboscopic photography, which he helped develop. This process allows us to see in slow motion what happens during events ... See full summary »
Harold E. Edgerton,
This short film is a four season look at the active life in the Tyrol region of Austria, where the locals live by centuries of tradition. In the winter, many people flock to the area to ... See full summary »
Efrem Zimbalist Jr.,
The Gay Tyrolese,
The Boys Choir of Wilten
This theatrical short acts as an infomercial specifically targeted at the female audience who is taught how to use the kitchen tools which are promotional items for the theater. The first ... See full summary »
The curtain opens; behind it are two pianos where Charles Bourne and Phil Ellis, billed as the Music Boxes, are seated playing. After a few bars, Blossom Seeley and Bennie Fields enter - she's in tulle, he's in sport coat, worsted trousers, vest, and tie carrying a cane and straw hat. They do three numbers, "Hello Mr. Bluebird," Irving Berlin's "The Call of the South," and "(A Pretty Spanish Town) On a Night Like This." Between the first two numbers, they kibbutz about southern music, and for the third song, she dons a sombrero and a serape and he sports a guitar and a gaucho hat. There's also a bit of dancing during the third number. Written by
The husband-and-wife team of Bennie Fields and Blossom Seeley were huge stars in vaudeville, yet they made very few films. As is the case for some other performers of their era (George M. Cohan, Fanny Brice, Gertrude Lawrence) the most accessible piece of film footage for Fields and Seeley is the biopic ABOUT them, in which they're portrayed by other actors: 'Somebody Loves Me', starring Betty Hutton and that inimitable song-and-dance man Ralph Meeker.
In their heyday, Fields and Seeley were so hugely popular that another husband-and-wife vaudeville act -- Jesse Block and Eve Sully -- achieved nearly as much stardom performing an almost identical act, effectively becoming the "second-team" Fields and Seeley. Offstage, though, there was a major difference in the couples' living arrangements. Fields and Seeley lived in hotel suites, paying room-service rates for every meal they ate, and eventually running out of money. Block and Sully lived modestly and invested their earnings wisely, ending in comfortable retirement.
The first 30 seconds of this Vitaphone short are occupied by two spats-wearing pianists. Apparently these two men had some slight name value of their own in 1930, although I've never heard of them. Finally, Fields and Seely rush in and start performing. They both have plenty of pep, and she's fairly attractive.
I was annoyed that both performers keep making movements as if they're about to break into a dance, but they never quite do so until the third of the three songs they perform in this short. When they finally start hoofing, the results are not impressive.
I was delighted to have this opportunity to see these two major performers doing their vaude act. Now that I've seen it, I understand why they never became stars in movie musicals. My rating for this one: just 4 out of 10, and I'll stick with Block and Sully.
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