Monday, 20 February 2012

The Broadway Melody

The Broadway Melody, 1929
Directed by Harry Beaumont
Nominated for 3 Oscars, Won 1

The 2nd annual Academy Awards were interesting. It was the only year that there were no official nominees. Only after research by the AMPAs was there an unofficial nominees list composed (based on seeing what films the Academy had evaluated). The Broadway Melody is the 2nd Best Picture winner (some argue the 1st. The 1st Oscars having honoured Best Picture- Production and Best Picture-Unique and Artistic Production, with Wings winning Best Picture- Production, and is listed on as the first winner).

Anyway, I was interested in what this movie would be like. Knowing virtually nothing about it, I was interested to see what a movie from 1929, one of the first all-talkie musicals.

This film was about 2 sisters who have come to New York to perform their act (singing and dancing). The one sister, Hank, is dating (almost engaged) to a man who's in with some music executives for Broadway shows and is a leading singer and dancer in Mr Zenfield's (music executive) show. But after an audition, the executives are only interested in Hanks beautiful sister, Queenie, but Queenie persuades them to take on Hank too. But Hank's boyfriend, Eddie, is falling in love with Queenie. But after Queenie subs in for a woman in very little clothes in one of Eddie's number, she attracts the attention of an older man, someone who Hank and Eddie don't trust.

This movie wasn't all that great. It was cliche and not terribly original, probably even for that time period of 82 years ago. At the same time, it was not bad for a movie that is, 82 years old. The acting was quite good (Bessie Love, who played Hank, had an unofficial nomination) and was a cute, fun film about sisterly bonds, sacrificing for love, and some good music. Funny enough, I didn't think I'd recognize any of it, but I did. One of which was used in Singin' In The Rain.

Overall, I thought it was an okay movie. It wasn't terribly interesting and found myself frequently checking to see how much time is left. But I was impressed in how good it was for it's time. I was expecting a lot less than what I got.

Acting- 7/10 
Directing- 7/10 
Screenplay- 6.5/10 
Visuals- 7/10 
Music- 8/10 
Emotional Connection- 5/10 
Entertainment- 5/10 
Rewatchability- 5/10 
Overall Enjoyment- 5/10 
Overall Package- 6/10       

Total: 61.5/100

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