7.1/10
317
12 user 3 critic

The Firefly (1937)

Nina Maria Azara is the beautiful and alluring singing spy for Spain during the Napoleonic Wars. Her mission is to seduce French Officers, in order for them to reveal Napolean's intentions ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert Z. Leonard

Writers:

Frances Goodrich (screen play), Albert Hackett (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jeanette MacDonald ... Nina Maria Azara
Allan Jones ... Don Diego
Warren William ... Major de Rouchemont
Billy Gilbert ... Innkeeper
Douglass Dumbrille ... Marquis de Melito (as Douglas Dumbrille)
Henry Daniell ... General Savary
Leonard Penn ... Etienne
Tom Rutherford Tom Rutherford ... King Ferdinard (as Tom Rutherfurd)
Belle Mitchell ... Lola
George Zucco ... Secret Service Chief
Corbet Morris ... Duval (as Corbett Morris)
Matthew Boulton ... Wellington
Robert Spindola Robert Spindola ... Juan
Edit

Storyline

Nina Maria Azara is the beautiful and alluring singing spy for Spain during the Napoleonic Wars. Her mission is to seduce French Officers, in order for them to reveal Napolean's intentions toward Spain. She is sent to Bayonne, France to gather military secrets. Prior to this, she meets, Don Diego while performing at a club. Unknown to her, Don Diego is actually Captain Andre, who is sent to Spain to spy on her. While in France, Nina discovers Diego's true identity, only after she has fallen in love with him. Nina Maria outwits her potential captors and returns to Spain, and goes into hiding. Napoleon's troops invade Spain, resulting in Nina's capture. In a strange twist of fate, Nina and Captain Andre are reunited, but, the 2 nations are now at war... Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Jeanette MacDonald In Her Successor To "Maytime" See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 November 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tarantella See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original release prints featured color tinting of sequences in Sepia-Blue, Sepia-Orange, or Sepia-Blue-Pink. See more »

Goofs

When by the bridge we see a female with very long black plaits walking with her beau across the bridge. Not long after we see a closer shot of them about to walk across the bridge. See more »

Quotes

Don Diego: You have one bad habit.
Nina Maria Azara: Oh, yes? What?
Don Diego: You're always saying good-bye.
Nina Maria Azara: Very well then, I won't say good-bye. I'll just go!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Each time the dancing girls dance across the screen, a new screen credit is revealed. See more »

Connections

Featured in MGM Parade: Episode #1.24 (1956) See more »

Soundtracks

A Woman's Kiss
(uncredited)
Music by Rudolf Friml
Lyrics by Bob Wright and Chet Forrest
Sung by Allan Jones
Background vocal by Jeanette MacDonald
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Jeanette is captivating, but the plot is a yawner...
13 March 2006 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

If it wasn't for "Donkey Serenade", this would have been a total loss as a piece of gaudy MGM entertainment for the masses in the 1930s. JEANETTE MacDONALD gives her all as a sexy spy who tries getting potentially harmful information from French officers, but it's all pretty preposterous and finally much too long for sustained interest.

The only sequence that comes off as completely charming is the "Donkey Serenade" episode with ALLAN JONES singing his heart out as he rides a dusty trail following her carriage. Jones is a fine match for MacDonald but probably left MGM when he realized it was Nelson Eddy's territory.

The score is kind of lackluster, the sets are opulent in typical MGM grand style manner, but the plot is never lively enough to keep one's attention riveted on the plodding story of spies and counter-spies in ye olde Spain. Everyone tries hard, but it just seems to stall somewhere near the middle and never recovers.

Trivia: Did Jeanette MacDonald ever show her real hair in a costume film? She must wear at least 25 wigs and hairdos in this film alone, changing her far from simple hairstyles from scene to scene more often than Lana Turner ever changed her costumes in glamorous roles. There must have been a special Jeanette wig department at Metro just for the occasion.


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