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Axel von Ambesser
It may not be perfect technically, but this is a sensual, made with great fun, original, capricious and extravagant operetta. It has elegance, a great cast, brilliant music and songs, wit, great sets; some scenes are even a bit bizarre and fetishistic. This is not a filmed operetta, but a real film-operetta. More than just direct, Erik Charell choreographed the film. Although the film stands on its own feet, the influence of Ernst Lubitsch (pictures) is evident.
Amongst the memorable scenes (and there are many) there is the - in its time - technically challenging sequence with energetic Lilian Harvey singing "Das gibt's nur einmal". Indeed: many operetta films have been made, but none so innovative, brilliant as this one.
This first and only German film of Erik Charell is not only a classic of early German sound film, showing all the capabilities of the UFA, but also a promising start of a film career that was not to be realized: Charell had to leave Nazi-Germany and was unable to continue his career as a film director abroad. It is curious that the film was banned by Goebbels only but in October 1937.
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