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The Vagabond King (1930)

The story takes place in medieval France. Poet-rogue Francois Villon, sentenced to hang by King Louis XI for writing derogatory verses about him, is offered a temporary reprieve. His ... See full summary »

Directors:

Ludwig Berger, Ernst Lubitsch (uncredited)

Writers:

Brian Hooker (operetta), Herman J. Mankiewicz (adaptation) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis King ... François Villon
Jeanette MacDonald ... Katherine
O.P. Heggie ... King Louis XI
Lillian Roth ... Huguette
Warner Oland ... Thibault
Arthur Stone ... Oliver the barber
Tom Ricketts ... The Astrologer (as Thomas Ricketts)
Lawford Davidson ... Tristan
Christian J. Frank Christian J. Frank ... Executioner
Elda Voelkel ... Girl
Dorothy Davis ... Brunette
Thora Waverly Thora Waverly ... Brunette
Cecile Cameron Cecile Cameron ... Brunette
Jean Douglas Jean Douglas ... Blonde
Eugenia Woodbury Eugenia Woodbury ... Blonde
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Storyline

The story takes place in medieval France. Poet-rogue Francois Villon, sentenced to hang by King Louis XI for writing derogatory verses about him, is offered a temporary reprieve. His hanging will be postponed for 24 hours, and in that time he must defeat the invading Burgundians and win the love of the beautiful Katherine. Written by Albert Sanchez Moreno <a.moreno@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

remake | swashbuckler | operetta | See All (3) »

Taglines:

Paramount Pictures presents the 100% Technicolor All-Talking, All-Singing Musical Romance! See more »

Genres:

Musical | Romance

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 February 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der König der Vagabunden See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Color (2-strip Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Only one complete color print of this film survived in Paramount's vault. Eventually it was turned over to UCLA, which preserved it in 1990. See more »

Alternate Versions

This film was also released as a silent, for theatres not yet equipped for sound and for overseas markets that were not receptive to musicals. See more »

Connections

Featured in Broadway: The American Musical (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Song of the Vagabonds
(uncredited)
Music by Rudolf Friml
Lyrics by Brian Hooker
Sung by Dennis King and Chorus
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Poor early talkie with terrible acting
29 May 2013 | by bbmtwistSee all my reviews

This is a terrible early talkie with a flamboyant 19th century ham performance by Dennis King in the lead and a nondescript one from Jeannette MacDonald. It was filmed entirely in 2 strip Technicolor, which makes up for some of its failings. A restored print is housed at UCLA and it is the only known surviving color print. The elaborate art direction deservedly earned an Oscar nomination.

It is available on DVD from Loving the Classics, which uses an old battered 16 mm black and white television print (MCA-TV), which is 3/4 screen, blurry, washed out and with poor sound. The silence surrounding the dialogue is full of white noise.

There is the lovely score - MacDonald has three numbers: Someday, Only A Rose and Love Me Tonight.

Songs:

Act One: 1:08:10

King Louis - King Hymn - Chorus SOMEDAY – sung by MacDonald If I Were King - King What France Needs - King Song of the Vagabonds – King ONLY A ROSE – sung by MacDonald, joined at end by King SOMEDAY – reprise – sung by MacDonald Huguette's Waltz - sung by Roth LOVE ME TONIGHT – sung by MacDonald and King

Act Two: 36:30

Pool Procession - Chorus Song of the Vagabonds – reprise – King Requiem – Chorus ONLY A ROSE – reprise finale – sung by Macdonald and King

This is for die-hard fans of Rudolf Friml (composer) and Jeannette MacDonald.

MacDonald scenes: 11

Act One: Church Interior, Street, King's Observatory, Observing Villon's transformation, Palace Walk, Balcony Scene, Observing Villon and Herald from Burgundy; Act Two: Garden, Huguette's Death Scene, Church, Gallows.


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