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Flying High (1931)

An eccentric inventor and his new flying machine are the focus of this musical comedy.

Director:

Charles Reisner (as Charles F. Reisner)

Writers:

Buddy G. DeSylva (book) (as George G. De Sylva), Lew Brown (book) | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bert Lahr ... Rusty
Charlotte Greenwood ... Pansy
Pat O'Brien ... Sport
Kathryn Crawford ... Eileen
Charles Winninger ... Doctor Brown
Hedda Hopper ... Mrs. Smith
Guy Kibbee ... Mr. Smith
Herbert Braggiotti Herbert Braggiotti ... Gordon
Gus Arnheim and His Orchestra Gus Arnheim and His Orchestra ... Gus ArnHeim's Orchestra (as Gus Arnheim and his Orchestra)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gus Arnheim Gus Arnheim ... Gus Arnheim - the Orchestra Leader
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Storyline

An eccentric inventor and his new flying machine are the focus of this musical comedy.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 November 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

George White's Flying High See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

There was considerable pressure from the Hays Office to remove the examination scene from the movie, but MGM held firm, claiming they paid $100,000 for the rights to the play just for that particular scene. Eventually some aspects of that scene was removed when some exhibitors rejected the film. The TCM print contains the scene, but it may be the abbreviated version. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Brown: Your physical condition is your apprenticeship. My order as physician is to strip.
Chorus Girl: Hooray! We gotta strip!
See more »

Connections

Featured in That's Dancing! (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

I'll Make a Happy Landing (the Lucky Day I Land You)
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Dorothy Fields
Played during the opening credit and at the end
Sung by Kathryn Crawford and chorus and danced by the chorus in a production number
Played also as background music
Footage later used in Plane Nuts (1933)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Bert Crashes -- Charlotte Soars
21 November 2003 | by Ron OliverSee all my reviews

A slightly unscrupulous promoter hopes to be FLYING HIGH after selling stock in a half-crazed inventor's aerocopter.

The rather bizarre humor of comic Bert Lahr is showcased in this fast-moving little comedy. Rather an acquired taste, Lahr's antics will either delight or depress the viewer, who should not be expecting to see an early version of the Cowardly Lion. Lahr's style of humor might be best described as moronic and those who enjoy laughing at the feebleminded should find him quite amusing.

What helps to ameliorate Lahr's antics is his teaming for much of the film with the great Charlotte Greenwood, who excelled in deadpan physical comedy. With her long legs and horsy features, Greenwood makes her man-crazy character into a real source of fun. Whether it's chasing Lahr around an airport, enduring a riotous Wedding Morning, or flailing about in his contraption thousands of feet in the air, Miss Greenwood never fails to pack in the laughs.

Pat O'Brien seems rather uncomfortable as Lahr's straight man and his romantic scenes with spunky Kathryn Crawford are somewhat less than enthralling. Charles Winninger catches the viewer's attention as a naughty, pre-Code doctor interested in examining a bevy of young aviatrixes. Cherubic Guy Kibbee & stately Hedda Hopper do credit to their short screen time as Miss Crawford's parents.

Movie mavens will recognize an uncredited Clarence Wilson as Greenwood's bad-tempered lunch counter boss.

Busby Berkeley has provided some fairly decent dance sequences whose sole motivation seems to be to reveal as much feminine flesh as possible, but the overhead kaleidoscopic shots are pleasant harbingers of the classic work he would perform a few years later at Warner's.

Lahr's aerocopter, which may or may not be technically feasible, is based on the gyrocopter or Autogiro, both of which actually did fly but have now been almost completely superseded by the helicopter.


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