A theatrical producer puts aside his own success to boost the career of a talented singer.A theatrical producer puts aside his own success to boost the career of a talented singer.A theatrical producer puts aside his own success to boost the career of a talented singer.
** (out of 4)
Decent race movie has producer Duke Davis (Ralph Cooper) breaking it off with partner Ethel Andrews (Lena Horne) so that her career will have a chance to take off. He hits the hard times before eventually getting what might be a break by bringing Andrews back to form. If you're familiar with race films then you know they don't feature the style, budgets or talents of those films being released in Hollywood. You also shouldn't go into a Musical like this expecting something like you'd see from MGM. With that out of the way, this is pretty much what you'd expect as we get a straight-forward story without any twists or turns and a predictable ending that you'll see coming from a mile away. There's really nothing overly special here but people will want to check out Horne who made her film debut here. I don't think anyone could watch this and see the talent that would come in future films but at the same time this was her first stab at acting. The screenplay really doesn't do her any justice but she does have that wonderful voice that she gets to show off several times. The songs themselves aren't going to be found on Horne's greatest hits package but they aren't too bad. I thought Cooper was pretty good as well, although, again, the screenplay does his character no justice. While the part wasn't the best written I thought Cooper kept things moving and made his character fun to watch. There's not too much imagination in terms of direction but I'm sure a lot of this could be blamed on the screenplay and the fact that there wouldn't have been much time to shoot this thing. The low budget is very apparent with several dance/musical sequences, which just come off looking very cheap. The numbers aren't overly bad, it's just that they aren't impressive either. Fans of race movies or those wanting to see the 21-year-old Horne might want to check this out but others should stay clear.
- Jun 12, 2010