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roxy1927

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This is a big surprise as I mentioned it not too long ago but figured it as improbable as it doesn't seem to be a favorite except for me.

Wasn't I Concentrate On You written for this film?
Nobody is mentioning the absolutely terrific Please Don't Monkey With Broadway with its superb dancing and hilarious lyrics.
And George Murphy keeps up with Astaire!
Interestingly at the time there was talk about tearing down some major theaters between 44th and 45th which is probably why Porter came up with this song. Right after his death the architectural slaughter of Times Square began which of course ruined it and turn it into the hellhole of the 70s and 80s.
And then with Koch and Giuliani they made it even worse which seemed impossible but like true politicians they managed it.

Begin the Beguine comes from the unsuccessful musical Jubilee(Has this ever been revived? It's pedigree is astonishing. I haven't seen it at either Mufti or Encores) which doesn't seem to have made much of an impression until Artie Shaw picked it up.
I happen to prefer the first half that is so beautifully designed, shot and staged.

The Broadway Melody (of '29) was a big sensation when it opened and an enormously popular movie that everyone had to see which is how it probably got Best Picture. I've never seen a print that came anywhere near what it must have looked like when it opened. And I assume the two color Wedding of the Painted Doll is lost for good. That final scene in the cab when Bessie Love realizes she has to go back to touring and is alone is priceless. Meeting Anita Page at a showing of Our Dancing Daughters was amazing especially because I thought she had been dead for years. And when she spoke she thought she was the star of the film and did not mention Joan Crawford once. How could anyone tell her it was this film that made Crawford a MGM A lister?
 
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JoelA

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This is a big surprise as I mentioned it not too long ago but figured it as improbable as it doesn't seem to be a favorite except for me.

Wasn't I Concentrate On You written for this film?
Nobody is mentioning the absolutely terrific Please Don't Monkey With Broadway with its superb dancing and hilarious lyrics.
And George Murphy keeps up with Astaire!
Interestingly at the time there was talk about tearing down some major theaters between 44th and 45th which is probably why Porter came up with this song. Right after his death the architectural slaughter of Times Square began which of course ruined it and turn it into the hellhole of the 70s and 80s.
And then with Koch and Giuliani they made it even worse which seemed impossible but like true politicians they managed it.

Begin the Beguine comes from the unsuccessful musical Jubilee(Has this ever been revived? It's pedigree is astonishing. I haven't seen it at either Mufti or Encores) which doesn't seem to have made much of an impression until Artie Shaw picked it up.
I happen to prefer the first half that is so beautifully designed, shot and staged.

The Broadway Melody (of '29) was a big sensation when it opened and an enormously popular movie that everyone had to see which is how it probably got Best Picture. I've never seen a print that came anywhere near what it must have looked like when it opened. And I assume the two color Wedding of the Painted Doll is lost for good. That final scene in the cab when Bessie Love realizes she has to go back to touring and is alone is priceless. Meeting Anita Page at a showing of Our Dancing Daughters was amazing especially because I thought she had been dead for years. And when she spoke she thought she was the star of the film and did not mention Joan Crawford once. How could anyone tell her it was this film that made Crawford an MGM A lister?
Obviously, there are many fans of this film. I'm not too surprised about this announcement since it was mentioned in a podcast a while back that an Astaire film and a Powell film were on tap (no pun intended).

I first saw it on the big screen in the late 70s at the Akron Civic Theater, a large downtown movie palace built in the late 20s. And even though there are some on this forum who insist that no films after the widescreen conversion in the early 50s could be shown in Academy ratio, this and all other pre-1953 films shown in this venue were projected in their OAR. The theater was packed and the audience loved it.

Yes, I Concentrate on You was written for this film.

I believe the two-color Technicolor footage of The Wedding of the Painted Doll was lost in the 1967 MGM vault fire.

Interesting about Anita Page. I read somewhere that her career stalled because she refused to play the casting couch game.
 
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Robin9

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Shit, I (unforgivably) completely forgot about Ella's version. Shame on me and let me add it to my list! :emoji_heart:
I have two recordings of it by Ella. The first was with Buddy Bregman on The Cole Porter Songbook and the second was with Nelson Riddle on Ella Sings Cole.
 

Robert Crawford

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Amazon added a pre-order link that shows April 16th as the release date, but that's on a Friday. I suspect that's a type with the actual release date of Tuesday, April 13th.
 

Ronald Epstein

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Thank you for supporting HTF when you preorder using the link below. If you are using an adblocker you will not see link. As an Amazon Associate HTF earns from qualifying purchases

 

M90GM

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View attachment 91138

NEW 2021 1080p HD Master Sourced from 4K scan of Nitrate preservation elements!
BROADWAY MELODY OF 1940
Run Time 102:00
Subtitles English SDH
Audio Specs: DTS HD-Master Audio 2.0 - English, MONO - English
Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1 4x3 FULL FRAME
Product Color BLACK & WHITE
Disc Configuration BD 50
Special Features: Making-of Featurette: "Begin the Beguine" (hosted by Ann Miller); "Our Gang Comedies: The Big Premiere"; MGM Cartoon: "The Milky Way" ; Original Theatrical Trailer (HD)

The job – a career breakthrough – is supposed to go to hoofer Johnny Brett, but a mix-up in names gives it to his partner. Another example of Broadway hopes dashed? Not when Johnny is played by Fred Astaire. Sparkling Cole Porter songs, clever comedy and dance legends Astaire and Eleanor Powell make the final Broadway Melody (co-starring George Murphy) a film to remember. Powell’s nautical “All Ashore" routine (a/k/a I Am the Captain”), Astaire’s blissful “I’ve Got My Eyes on You” and Fred & Eleanor's elaborate routine to Cole Porter's classic "I Concentrate On You" are more than enough to please any fan. But they’re just a warm-up for the leads to tap one finale number into immortality: “Begin the Beguine,” introduced by Frank Sinatra in That’s Entertainment! with, “You can wait around and hope, but you’ll never see the likes of this again.”
My DVD corrupted - as is happening with too many of my burned 10 year old WB discs so this is a welcome arrival - we watched Begin the Beguine over and over ...probably why the disc "stopped"!
 

OLDTIMER

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I just got my copy. Played it right through last night. No play issues. The print is very clean, very good grey scale, fine grain, but not quite as sharp as I had expected. Some close-ups look as if they were deliberately shot soft. The extras (as usual!) are not quite as sharp as on the DVD.
 

roxy1927

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Is it a considerable improvement over the DVD. Even in revival houses I found it a bit on the soft side. Never as sharp as I wanted it to be. Maybe this is a pass?
 

Andrew Budgell

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JoelA

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Astairefan

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Is it a considerable improvement over the DVD. Even in revival houses I found it a bit on the soft side. Never as sharp as I wanted it to be. Maybe this is a pass?
I haven't gotten it yet (although I hope to soon), but I would still say, especially based on some of the other reviews, it should be worth a try. I don't know how you feel about Fred Astaire films in general, but, if you like him (and want more), we are at the point that we REALLY need to buy what comes out to get more (I mean, this is the first Astaire film to come out on blu from WAC since Finian's Rainbow in 2017). Quite frankly, my own observations from what I've seen others post here and on the other forum are that there has been SOME controversy about the transfers on every Warner-owned Fred Astaire film that's made it to Blu-ray (admittedly, some more than others), and this one sounds like one of the BETTER transfers (based on the reviews and comments so far). So, again, I would sooner say give this one a chance.
 

roxy1927

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I love Astaire but was disappointed by the review of the Criterion Swing Time. As I've written I once saw a 5/5 print in a revival house and it was jaw dropping. With all the re-examining of films with blackface and its being offensive to us despite its long tradition I hope they all include the fact that Bojangles of Harlem is one of Astaire's best numbers and the production number as a whole is one of the great ones on film. A problem that Babes on Broadway has in its amazing sensational final number. Will that get a bluray despite being problematic?
 

lark144

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I don't have this yet, but Mr. Harris gave it a 4.9/5 for Image and highly recommended it. Sounds like a worthy upgrade to me. https://www.hometheaterforum.com/co...he-broadway-melody-of-1940-in-blu-ray.371618/
A nice upgrade? I don't think you can compare this to the DVD. Beyond the added resolution, the DVD was electronic looking, overly clean, with no or little depth of field and shimmered continually throughout the "Begin The Beguine" number. This, on the other hand, has perfect contrast, amazing depth of field, beautiful resolution and you can finally see those floating silhouettes in both the mirrors behind Astaire and Powell, as well as on the polished floor. And the details on those costumes and the intricacy of the lighting! And the way the camera cranes upward, you can feel it. It's heaven! Btw, none of this came across on the DVD. For my money, it's an essential purchase. Use the DVD for tree-trimming.
 

AnthonyClarke

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M90GM wrote "My DVD corrupted - as is happening with too many of my burned 10 year old WB discs so this is a welcome arrival - we watched Begin the Beguine over and over ...probably why the disc "stopped"!"
When will you people remember to change the needle for every play! A blunt steel needle will rip shreds out of any disc! Some of my discs are more than 100 years old and still play perfectly due to that elementary exercise.
 

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