Reviews written by registered user
purplecrayon

8 reviews in total 
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7 out of 18 people found the following review useful:
Jeanette ain't no Norma and Gene ain't no Fredric!, 17 May 2003

I must first say I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE the 1932 version of this film. Norma Shearer and Fredric March were perfect, the filming was perfect, the sets were perfect, the costumes were perfect, the story was perfect. It is a film I could watch over and over and never tire of! So why did I watch this remake? Well, I wanted to see for myself what it was like, even though I knew beforehand that noone could top Fredric and Norma.

I was correct. There was absolutely no reason to do this remake. It was wrong to be in color. The color was just distracting. Jeanette MacDonald and Gene Raymond had no chemistry whatsover. All through the film I kept saying, " You're not saying it as though you MEAN it!" They just seemed to parrot the lines back and forth to each other. And these 2 were husband and wife in real life??? Fredric March and Norma Shearer had so much more sincerity in their performance in the 1932 version. You could FEEL their love, their joy, their desperation...those 2 really knew how to act. They WERE Ken and Kathleen. Jeanette and Gene were not. Gene Raymond didn't even know how to hand a lady a handkerchief in the right way!

Brian Aherne was totally non convincing as a man who was obsessed with the memory of his murdered beloved and his hatred of her murderer. You never FELT or BELIEVED that it meant much to him. Look at Leslie Howard's performance of John Carteret in the 1932 version. It was perfect. You could really see his borderline insanity from his obsession of wanting his Moonyean, and his hatred for her murderer, Jeremy Wayne.

The added songs in this version were only a distraction from the story. In the 1932 version, Norma did sing "Smilin Through", and it was appropriate for the scene. Here Jeanette sang too many songs and they didn't need to be there. I didn't care for her singing anyway.

This version had the classic scenes all wrong or even missing! Where Kathleen and Ken meet at the old Wayne house, well that was a beautiful scene with Fredric and Norma. The shadows were just right. Fredric comes into the room from the shadows. You see his beautiful, expressive eyes. The camera cuts to Norma. Her eyes tell you EXACTLY that this man is THE MAN who will have her heart. The picnic scenes in this version were nothing compared to Fredric and Norma having their teas at Mrs. Crouch's. Fredric and Norma had a lot more going on between them than eating! Why they cut out the homecoming scene at the train station, where Norma's Kathleen in the 32 version waits expectedly for Ken, but sees only Willie, and later we see her standing there alone, hoping to the very last moment that Ken will come, is beyond me. It was a beautiful scene. Norma was radiant in her white suit, ready for her beloved's return. In this one, Ken hears Kathleen singing in church. It just didn't have the impact of the train station scene. I could go on and on about scenes that were just all wrong!!

I am sure a Jeanette MacDonald fan will love this film. But if you want to see THE CLASSIC, THE BEST, THE MOST BEAUTIFUL version of this film, watch the 1932 one with Fredric March and Norma Shearer. You won't be disappointed.

4 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
One of Fred's firsts, not bad, but not really good either..., 5 October 2002

This is the 35th or so Fredric March movie I have seen to date...and the earliest one. I must say overall I was not impressed with it. Fred was handsome to be sure...but his part was not very challenging or deep for him. He was fine in the movie though...wonderful voice, got to see him in knickers again (other time in the Marriage Playground)...hey, if I were at a college and he was a professor, I would be like Clara and her pals; take his class just because he's such a swell guy!!

About Clara Bow...I didn't think she was so great,you could tell she was definately meant to be a silent actress with all her facial and eye expressions, and I have no idea why Fred fell for her instead of her friend Helen, who was more of a nice and sweet girl. I found Clara very boisterous, rebellious; I did not like her voice or manner or personality. I found the clothing styles in this film hilarious!! Did people actually wear that kind of stuff??? And it surprised me how Clara looked like she could be a modern person, a person of now, I think because her hairstyle was so different--more frizzy and loose.

This is not a film that leaves you sighing at the wonderful acting or story...it left me just thinking, "that was interesting..." It is in no way Fredric's best. For that, see him in The Eagle and the Hawk, The Best Years of Our Lives, Smilin' Through, Dr.Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, We Live Again...there are many others out there besides this one. Still and all, I am glad to have seen this, Fred's 2nd talkie.

3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
What Happened? Love Happened!, 28 September 2002

I remember watching Elvis movies on tv when I was young, when they had "Elvis movie week" during the afternoon. I can honestly say that this is the only Elvis movie I remember anything about, and that I remember actually liking it. What I liked most (now this was when I was 12 yrs. old or so) was how the little Chinese girl worked as matchmaker for Elvis and the nurse to get together. I just really loved it!! I also liked that Elvis was a very kind and loving man to a lost little girl. Now, I just saw this video again after not having seen it in over 25 years, and I was happy to find that I STILL like it, actually, I like it much better than I did when I was young. I was glad, because this is not true of all movies, Superman being an example. Well, this time I saw a lot in the movie that I did not remember. I especially liked when Elvis was with Dorothy in the beginning and he sings the song "Relax". It is just very funny. I liked his eye check-up scene with the nurse. I think Elvis looked very handsome walking around in a suit all the time. The scene of him riding in the monorail was beautiful and romantic. All I can say is that this is a GREAT Elvis movie, and all my children, ages 19, 10, and 4, love it too. The songs are of the "fluffy" sort, but we got the CD of them because my children liked them so much. Sadly, this movie is not available to purchase at the moment. I was glad to find a copy on ebay. I must honestly say this is NOT Elvis' best movie, but it is lots better than a lot of them, and personally ranks in my top 5 Elvis movies. If you want to see Elivis' best acting, see him in Jailhouse Rock and King Creole.

Laughter (1930)
8 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
See Fredric as a growling Polar Bear!, 26 September 2002
3/10

I was expecting this movie to be much more than it was. I read that it was one of Fredric March's personal favorites, his others being A Star is Born, Death Takes a Holiday, and Best Years of Our Lives, and so since he liked it I thought it was going to be really good. I must say I was really bored with it. The story seemed boring and not really well written. I think it could have been a much better story if the script was better. As is, there were too many loose ends. Sure, there were some funny moments (it was enjoyable to see Fred draped in a white bearskin rug!), and Fred gave a few kisses, and you got to see him in his undershirt. But I have seen him in MUCH better roles, more romantic, more funny...everyone's opinion is different. This is mine...It is one of the few Fred movies I didn't really like.

20 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
I Quite Liked This Film!, 26 September 2002
5/10

After all the negative things I have heard said about this film, I was expecting something very...I don't know...boring, silly, empty. But I must say I was more than pleasantly surprised with it and I did enjoy it. I watched it because I just discovered Fredric March, and have watched over 30 of his films now. I must say that this film in no way provided him to display his marvelous acting skill, but still it was nice to see him do this bit of light comedy. I think the story is nice when you want to watch something that is not heavy, but lighthearted and fun with the usual 1930's "happily ever after" ending. It is something my children would enjoy.

Don't have much else to say, except if you like Fredric as much as I do, you will like this film. Too bad he only gave one kiss in this one!!

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
A sweet romantic film to watch for fun, 12 September 2002
6/10

I have recently discovered Fredric March (as my daughter Constance told you in her review) and he is a great actor. Tonight is Ours is one of his early films. It is not one of his best, as far as seeing some of his great acting, but it is very nice. Fredric is just a real romantic guy here. I love his voice, his being, all the poetic dialog he whispers to Claudette, I love his eyeliner...makes his eyes very dark and handsome. Really, this is just a fluff film with an unrealistic plot to watch Fredric in, and I liked it because it was interesting enough to where I could watch it several times over and not be bored with it. I just like how Fredric looks so young and handsome here. I can not recommend it to just anyone, unless you like old movies that are rather lightweight, which I do from time to time. But I can highly recommend it to fans of Fredric March who want to gaze upon his handsomeness and see him in a nice little romance.

I must say: Claudette's party outfit was really, really, weird! Fredric's was something to behold too! I liked the guy who was arranged to marry Claudette...he was very kind and understanding.

19 out of 20 people found the following review useful:
Fredric March impresses again!, 31 August 2002

I recently have discovered Fredric March and have been watching several of his movies. Though I personally prefer his early films where he was the young and romantic hero, I found this movie to be a very good example of how broad his acting talent was. He was simply amazing as Willy Loman; he impressed me as being a truly desperate man at the end of his sanity. He should have been the one to win best actor during this year; instead it went to Humphrey Bogart for "The African Queen". Why, I don't know, for Fredric March's portrayal of Willie Loman was excellent. It brought tears to my eyes at the end,and I am not one to cry during a film; it takes something special for an actor to move me to tears.

The whole film had a darkness to it, it was very melancholy, depressing, desperate, hopeless...it is an emotionally exhausting film to watch. It does not leaving you sighing happily at the end. Still, I recommend you watch it for a wonderful performance by Fredric March.

23 out of 25 people found the following review useful:
A Very Good Fredric March Film, 29 August 2002
8/10

I have recently discovered the actor Fredric March, and so have been watching many of his movies. I must say, I thought it would be a good one, since Rouben Mamoulian directed it. I was right; this is a beautifully filmed movie. It is poetic, visual art. I personally did not find the editing choppy at all. I felt the story was a good one, and the actors all well chosen. Anna Sten was a beautiful woman, and a very good actress in this film, the only film I have seen her in so far. She was very convincing as a peasant girl; innocent,naive, childlike. She and Fredric March did very well together. I thought Fredric March was georgous in this film, young and handsome,dashing in those Russian military uniforms and long Russian shirts.

Loved his little mustashe too,but I did not like the beard in the end of the film. My favorite scenes were of Anna and Fredric together when young lovers; when chasing her through the field and climbing the tree, when they were at the Easter church service, when he comes to see her at her bedroom window... the scene in the conservatory was well done. But how sad to see that Fredric's military life has hardened him and made him a selfish cad. Thankfully, unlike his character in "Anna Karenina", he realizes his sin and makes his wrongs right. I appreciate the moral uprightness Fredric achieves by the end of the film. In summary, this is a beautiful film and I highly recommend it.