In 18th-Century Russia, the Czar, Paul, is surrounded by murderous plots and trusts only Count Pahlen. Pahlen wishes to protect his friend, the mad king, but because of the horror of the ... See full summary »
Professor Stock and his wife Mizzi are always bickering. Mizzi tries to seduce Dr. Franz Braun, the new husband of her good friend Charlotte. Dr. Braun's colleague, Dr. Mueller, who has had... See full summary »
Queen Louise's cabinet are worried that she will become an old maid, and are delighted when she marries the rougish Count Renard. Unfortunately, he finds his position as Queen's Consort unsatisfying and without purpose, and the marriage soon runs into difficulties.Written by
Philip Apps <email@example.com>
There is no evidence that, as has been suggested, the dialogue is post-synced. Although there are a number of unmarried shots (i.e., not shot at the same time as the sound) throughout the film, these are always where no tight syncing is required. Almost all dialogue sequences are shot in pretty static two-shots and are plainly sync sound (in any case, accurate post-syncing would be extremely difficult in the period before looping was introduced). An exception is the song and chorus sequence just after Alfred has walked out on her, where there is solo singing at some distance from the camera, followed by a sequence with chorus; both have independent sound and visible lip-sync errors. There is no mixing of tracks in the dubbing--everything is done by editing, of which there is a considerable amount (for example, the music stops to let you hear the dog gnawing his bone just before "Nobody's using it now" and there are edits to enable this). There is a lot of level control of the sound to keep the effects (mostly live) down. The speech and sound quality are remarkably good throughout--a very considerable achievement for the period--and the synchronization always perfect. The film ends with playout music and no picture, which must have been something of an innovation at that time. See more »
I'll lay the dish here / Ooh, la la la la! / To hold the fish here / Ooh, la la la la! / The serviettes here / And now the cigarettes here / And matches, too. / They mustn't complain. / A little candy / Ooh, la la la la! / A little brandy / Ooh, la la la la! / A bunch of roses / To show the way we entertain / And a little bottle of champagne.
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100: The Love Parade (1929) - released 11/19/1929, viewed 6/10/08.
DOUG: I always said that as soon as they released an Ernst Lubitsch box set, I would check it out. As Lubitsch's first sound film, 'The Love Parade' would have closed out the 20's for us. This is my 5th Lubitsch film, and he has yet to disappoint me. Right from the start, Lubitsch has an excellent handle on how to utilize sound, dialogue, and music, but still gets plenty of mileage out of dialogue-free business, such as the opening scene. The two leads spark nearly as much chemistry as they would later in 'Love Me Tonight': Chevalier (in his second sound film) is charming as ever, and Jeanette McDonald (in her first film) is supremely sexy (really!), showing a lot more skin in several scenes than the Hays Code would have likely allowed. I thought the second half of the film lagged quite a bit; once the two are married, it's just a series of scenes of Alfred becoming miserable with his new life, suffering under the soul-crushing set-up of "many duties and no rights." Lupino Lane and Lillian Roth add a lot of cuteness, spunk, and verve to the proceedings as Alfred and Louise's respective sidekicks/hired help; their performance of "Let's Be Common" was my favorite musical number of the piece. Judging by his footwork, I'm guessing Lane came off of vaudeville. Although I enjoyed this movie less than the other four Lubitsch comedies I've seen, I still recommend it.
KEVIN: Going back to 1929 we have this royal battle of the sexes, Lubitsch-style! Though not an essential, this movie was definitely worth checking out. The always reliable Maurice Chevalier (in his second sound film), and the lovely singer Jeanette MacDonald (in her first film) star in The Love Parade, Ernst Lubitsch's teasing romantic musical. When a suave ambassador (Chevalier) gets in one too many scandals in his beloved Paris, he returns home to his native Silvania, where he catches the eye of the man-starved queen (MacDonald). But when they wed, he becomes not a king but the "queen-consort," a position with many mundane duties but no responsibilities or power of any kind. That and his lovely new wife is more focused on her queenly duties. Naturally, he finds his new life more than a little unsatisfying. I found the struggle of Chevalier's character to be fresh and appealing, portraying a man who refuses to remain a trophy husband. There were several scenes where it felt as though the gender roles had been reversed, though the scene in the opera house where Chevalier basically taunts MacDonald into submission worried me some. But overall, the irresistible team of Chevalier & Lubitsch definitely met my expectations. The dialogue-free opening scene was a stitch. MacDonald manages to strike the right balance of lovelorn maiden and blue-blooded royal. Lupino Lane and Lillian Roth (who would appear the following year in Animal Crackers) make a great team and provide some fantastic sidekick laughs (and some of the more inventive dance numbers).
Last film viewed: Wings (1927). Last film chronologically: The Cocoanuts (1929). Next film viewed: The Divorcée (1930). Next film chronologically: Anna Christie (1930).
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