Dorothy Gale is swept away from a farm in Kansas to a magical land of Oz in a tornado and embarks on a quest with her new friends to see the Wizard who can help her return home to Kansas and help her friends as well.
Pompous phonetics Professor Henry Higgins (Sir Rex Harrison) is so sure of his abilities that he takes it upon himself to transform a Cockney working-class girl into someone who can pass for a cultured member of high society. His subject turns out to be the lovely Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn), who agrees to speech lessons to improve her job prospects. Higgins and Eliza clash, then form an unlikely bond, one that is threatened by aristocratic suitor Freddy Eynsford-Hill (Jeremy Brett).Written by
The 1994 restoration by Robert A. Harris used a variety of methods to return the film to its original condition. The opening credits were digitally re-created using pieces of surviving frames. A few shots were digitally restored by scanning the 65mm negative or separation masters and output back to VistaVision (and enlarged back to 65mm). Some shots were simply re-composited via separation masters. Despite this, most of the film was able to be restored directly from the camera negative. For the sound, only the six-track magnetic print master (used to add sound to 70mm prints) survived. This was digitally restored and used to create a new six-track mix (faithful to the original version), as well as new Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 mixes for modern sound systems. See more »
During "Ascot Gavotte" when the crowd go to the edge of the track to watch the race, it zooms in on one area of the crowd. You see everyone raise their binoculars to watch the race. While they watch the race the shot cuts to a wider, side view and the third woman from the right (When it was zoomed in) has lost her binoculars entirely, yet when the camera zooms in again to see them lower the binoculars, she has them again. See more »
[sounds from crowd, occasionally a word or phrase, indistinct and mostly not associated with a character]
Don't just stand there, Freddy, go and find a cab.
All right, I'll get it, I'll get it.
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In the posters, playbills and the original cast album for the stage version of "My Fair Lady", the credits always read "based on Bernard Shaw's 'Pygmalion' ", letting the audience know what play "My Fair Lady" was actually adapted from. The movie credits simply read "from a play by Bernard Shaw". See more »
The intermission is deleted from AMC viewings of the film and severely shortened in the TCM version. See more »
During the first two hours of this movie, I had thought that it was the greatest musical ever brought to film. It's only during the last hour that it begins to languish and plod. If the first two hours are a solid 10/10, then the last hour is about a 4/10. It brings the average to about 8/10, which is exactly what I gave the movie, but it's fun to think about how great the movie could have been had the producers decided to find a better ending to an otherwise superb story.
It goes to show that film is a tricky medium, and regardless of how great musicals can be, live action simply isn't as interesting when it's recorded. 'My Fair Lady' could have used a bit of trimming, especially in Stanley Holloway's pieces, WITH A BIT OF LUCK and GET ME TO THE CHURCH ON TIME. Although they may have been spectacular to see on stage, movie audiences will yearn to see more about Eliza and wonder why the director spends so much time on her father.
On the brighter side, I believe that I have never seen Audrey Hepburn in a more perfect role. Eliza Doolittle is a lot like she, in their rise from poverty. And watching Audrey is like being invited to see a person shine in their most perfect niche. She isn't gorgeous in a modern sense, but even a decade after her death, her image still carries that immortal appeal. Some critics call it the "it" factor. We don't know what "it" is but we know it's there.
Billy Wilder once said, "God kissed her face, and there she was." For me, I just like her smile, and my smile when I watch her exuberance in one of the defining roles in her career.
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