Jerry Ryan is wandering aimlessly around New York, having given up his law career in Nebraska when his wife asked for a divorce. He meets up with Gittel Mosca, an impoverished dancer from ... See full summary »
An American missionary and his wife travel to the exotic island kingdom of Hawaii, intent on converting the natives. But the clash between the two cultures is too great and instead of understanding there comes tragedy.
George Roy Hill
Max von Sydow,
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 »
In the number "Burlington Bertie" the banana skin thrown onstage by Gertie disappears. See more »
Close personal relationships are bloody difficult, my darling but they do get easier with time. Loneliness gets harder.
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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 »
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 »
Julie Andrews does a magnificent job as Gertrude Lawrence...
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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