The Desert Song (1939) Poster

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Zarah Leander in the desert
robertdav8 February 2005
Although Ms. Leander herself found this film to be "so bad", it has its moments for her loyal fans. She enters in an airplane that she pilots as her deep, rich voice is played on a record in the cockpit! And her songs can not be faulted, with the help of Bruno Balz. Most alluring is "Sagt dir eine schone Frau vielleicht" sung in an elegant atmosphere at the "Hotel Royal" as she is watched by various sinister types ( A reflection of a scene from La Habanera? ). The exotic setting of the film seems to work against its star in some ways: it is not the place for her to wear her trademark furs and jewels, although there is some glamour in spite of being at an outpost in the middle of nowhere. The plot contains some anti-British propaganda. Hitler attended opening night, but his opinion of the film remains unrecorded. It is easy to focus on Zarah Leander and forget the other, rather poor, aspects in this film. All in all, this is strictly for the fans of Ms. Leander.
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Not her best ,but, entertaining
cynthiahost12 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I knew it wasn't her best but, I decided to get it any how .I was surprised when I got it that it was a clear digital print.The advertisement just stated excellent quality only. Now this movie was anti British.I'm wondering if the characters, grace Collins Father, played by Friederch Domin, not only was British but Jewish would Zarah done this film? Probably not.She avoided doing any anti Semitic propaganda films,She felt probably that the British were be more artistic license.But back then the enemy of Germans were us , The Jewish, the Irish ,British, eventually gay men,nuns and priest.They were all blamed for the depression.What can you expect? Zarah plays a plane driving Grace Collins, who's probably visiting her Father. Her Father ,Sir Collin,step father that is,is involved in a copper mining in Africa, but everyone is dressed for Arabia. Herbert Wilk plays Captain Stanney, part of the copper mine, and with a little lipstick and eye shadow and mascara, who develops a romantic interest in her, at least until she meets engineer Nic Brenten , played by Gustav Knuth, express as Kluth, handsome with lipstick and eye shadow too. You have also character actor Karl Gunther, no make up,of Burg Theater fame,who plays the commissar. You also have recognized face Frank Shafhietlin,who plays the one who finances the copper mind.The problem is when sir Collins turns greedy and does not want to support the mind, which up sets Grace,He wants to get rid of Nic.Grace desperately tries to stop it by singing to the British soldier to stall time.The financier kills Sir Collins, who all of a sudden is ten years younger.the swede Nicand Stanney are Friends again and the mind reopens.Shows Zarah writing a note to Nic, now she runs her fathers estate.Well the fighting scenes where the Arabians,in Africa?, are struggling against the British attack.The songs are good too.,But that hairdo she wears in the ball room scene is awful.I think it was created for that close up,still tacky.As I realize it was not her best but it was still entertaining .Heart of a queen would be better. At German War Films. 08/12/12
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Zarah Leander in Northern-Africa
bonito1 December 1998
Grace Collins (Zarah Leander), a beautiful singer with an astonishing alto-voice, comes to Rocky Camp (a far away place in Northern Africa). She meets a young (and not really beautiful) swedish engineer, who is building a copper-mine. They fall in love. But Graces stepfather (the bad character) needs to kill Brenton (her love)for some financial reason: His soldiers take him to prison. He will be executed, but help could be there within one hour. Can you imagine what happens now? No, it is impossible: She SINGS for the soldiers and saves him. Happy End! A boring movie, but Zarah Leander is wonderful and adorable as always: She sings "Fatme erzähl' mir ein Märchen" composed by Nico Dostal.
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