6.5/10
1,910
70 user 12 critic

Star! (1968)

A musical biography of Gertrude Lawrence, who led a hustling and bustling life on the stage.

Director:

Robert Wise
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Nominated for 7 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Julie Andrews ... Gertrude Lawrence
Richard Crenna ... Richard Aldrich
Michael Craig ... Sir Anthony Spencer
Daniel Massey ... Noël Coward
Robert Reed ... Charles Fraser
Bruce Forsyth ... Arthur Lawrence
Beryl Reid ... Rose
John Collin John Collin ... Jack Roper
Alan Oppenheimer ... Andre Charlot
Richard Karlan Richard Karlan ... David Holtzmann
Lynley Laurence Lynley Laurence ... Billie Carleton
Garrett Lewis Garrett Lewis ... Jack Buchanan
Anthony Eisley ... Ben Mitchell
Jock Livingston Jock Livingston ... Alexander Woollcott
J. Pat O'Malley ... Dan
Learn more

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Storyline

This is a movie based on the life of Gertrude Lawrence (Dame Julie Andrews), on and off-stage. It takes the opportunity to feature extravagant musical production numbers with Andrews acting, singing, and dancing. Written by Stewart M. Clamen <clamen@cs.cmu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

All Her Romances! All Her Wildness! All Her Fun! All Her Songs! All Her Dances! All Her Joy! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jewelery worth one thousand two hundred fifty pounds sterling was provided by Cartier for Dame Julie Andrews to wear, and on every occasion, a Pinkerton detective was on-duty. See more »

Goofs

In the number "Burlington Bertie" the banana skin thrown onstage by Gertie disappears. See more »

Quotes

Noel Coward: Close personal relationships are bloody difficult, my darling but they do get easier with time. Loneliness gets harder.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The only credits seen at the beginning of the film are those for a fictional black-and-white short subject about Gertrude Lawrence. The film's real credits all appear at the end. However, the Twentieth-Century Fox logo is shown only in black-and-white, and with tinny 1940's-style sound recording, as part of that fictional newsreel. We never see the logo in color and stereophonic sound, although Twentieth-Century Fox released "Star!" See more »

Alternate Versions

When business didn't meet expectations, the studio suggested some shortening, and Robert Wise offered about 20 minutes of cuts that were literally scissored out of the prints while the film played to initial reserved seat audiences. The studio also tried revamping the ads to appeal to a younger audience, even including a shot of Julie posing with a motorcycle that was just an on-location joke and not a scene in the film. Another idea was to make up a couple print ads that tried to make the movie look like a soap opera, adding "Loves Of A..." to the title. The "Loves Of A Star!" ads were only tested briefly in a few papers, and never used widely. This prompted a politely shocked letter from Robert Wise to the studio, who sheepishly admitted it was a desperate attempt that failed. That title was never put on the actual film. In the spring of 1969, the studio withdrew the film from release entirely and decided on a drastic edit and total new identity. After removing many of the musical numbers and preparing new ads that deliberately made the picture look like The Sound of Music, a two-hour version was released under the title "Those Were the Happy Times". At his own request, The credit "A Robert Wise Film" is not present on this version. The short version did no business. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Silver Star! (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Parisian Pierrot
Written by Noël Coward
Performed by Julie Andrews
See more »

User Reviews

 
Julie Andrews does a magnificent job as Gertrude Lawrence...
15 February 2011 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

Given that STAR! was cruelly dismissed by critics and public in 1968, I was surprised to find that despite its length, it does entertain with a fine performance by JULIE ANDREWS as the famous stage performer (who did occasional films) and by RICHARD CRENNA and DANIEL MASSEY in good supporting roles.

Andrews makes the most of every musical number--and there are plenty of them--demonstrating her enormous talent along with a flair for a more sophisticated style of acting miles apart from her "Mary Poppins" or "Sound of Music" image. And the staging of these musical portions makes excellent use of the WideScreen photography, emphasizing the lavish budget expended on costumes and sets.

The central reason for the film's lukewarm reception at the box office is surely the fact that no attempt is made to make Miss Lawrence a truly likable person. She is shown, flaws and all, throughout--quarreling with those around her as she puts herself, first and foremost, above all other considerations. It seems that only Richard Crenna (as the man she eventually marries) is able to stand up to her stubborn nature with a will of his own.

Coming on the heels of Julie's outstanding success in previous musicals, it's easy to see why audiences found it difficult to accept her as Gertude Lawrence--when actually, she gives a very strong performance. The script has to share some of the blame. It's a lumbering thing as it attempts to frame the story with newsreel accounts of Lawrence's life before ending the tidbits of information by delving into the main structure of the story.

For fans of Julie who enjoy hearing her belt out song after song in various stages of Miss Lawrence's career, the film does homage to Julie Andrews herself more than to the famous stage thespian.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

22 October 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Those Were the Happy Times See more »

Filming Locations:

Dennis, Massachusetts, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track | Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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