Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory, Volume 2: The Pirate / Words and Music / That's Dancing / The Belle of New York & Royal Wedding / That Midnight Kiss & The Toast of New Orleans (Sous-titres français)
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Classic Musicals Collection:Classic Musicals From The Dream Factory Vol.2 (DVD)
Fred Astaire dances on the ceiling in this 1951 Alan Jay Lerner musical for MGM, directed by Stanley Donen (Singin' in the Rain). The appealing story finds Astaire as part of a brother-and-sister act (along with Jane Powell) that travels to London at the time of Queen Elizabeth II's wedding. Astaire and Powell each find romances that threaten to break up the act, but that's mostly fun window dressing in a movie better known for some truly creative sequences made vivid by Donen, including Astaire's famous dance with a hat rack and his duet with Powell, "How Could You Believe Me When I Said I Loved You (When You Know I've Been a Liar All My Life)?" --Tom Keogh --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Royal Wedding(released in Mar/51)stars Fred as Tom Bowen and Jane Powell as his sister Ellen.They are a popular sister and brother act with the sister being kind of a male magnet.When the two get a chance to take their show to the London stage,they jump at it.While in London Ellen succumbs to a little too much male extra circular actvitiy with an English Lord Brindale(Peter Lawford);much to the chagrin of her brother.However the love bug eventually strikes Tom too and he falls hard for one Miss Ashmond(Sarah Churchill).Their act is a smash on the London stage while the course of true love doesn't necessarily run smooth for either.When the day of the real Royal Wedding of the now Queen of England comes around Tom and Ellen,who are by now pretty much set to marry their love interests,decide it would be foolish to break up the act for marriage.They vow to remain single but when the royal couple leave the church they break down and both go running after their respective mates.The film ends with a pull-back shot of the now married foursome leaving the church.
Those that know anything about Astaire will immediately see how this film is loosely based on his own career with his first and best partner,his sister Adele.Adele fell for an English Lord that inevitably broke up the act in the early /30s.Royal Wedding I would give about 3 1/2 stars;a good picture but certainly not one of Astaires best.However there are more than enough moments in this film for him to shine,and shine he does.Read more ›
This is a classic movie with excellent acting, singing, dancing and good humor. This is the movie that inspired the song "Dancing on the ceiling" and is also the one where Fred shows he can make any partner look good (even a hat stand). You even get to see Fred and Jane try to impress an audience on an ocean liner while the boat rocks uncontrollably in the rough seas; hilarious.
There are no special features on this DVD (I often find special features to be a waste), but that does not detract form being able to own this timeless classic
As always, Fred Astaire is at his best in the solo numbers he created, often with the assistance of "partner in crime" and close friend from the RKO days, choreographer Hermes Pan. The hat rack dance was an idea that originated with Pan, and he and Astaire had kicked it around for some time. Unfortunately, Pan was not on Royal Wedding to get the credit for it. The amazing "You're All the World to Me" number in which Fred dances on the walls and ceiling is breathtaking. I could watch it 100 times and never get tired of it. It was a very expensive number to shoot so whoever mentioned "low-budget feel" is perhaps a bit off the mark. Bethlehem Steel built the 360 degree rotating room set and there had to a large commutator to transform power to the lights as the room rotated (the lights, cameraman and everything else rotated with the room - except Fred). The costumes weren't breathtaking but they would have been out of context had they been, with perhaps one exception. Most of the scenes were not scenes from their show, and did not call for anything other than street wear, rehearsal clothes, or, once, evening wear for the show's London opening night.
Peter Lawford I can usually take or leave but he did a creditable job in this film as the Lord Jane's character would marry, and I liked him here better than in just about anything else he did that I have seen.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
A delightful romp for those who love classic Fred Astaire musicals. Wonderful dance sequences including the one where Fred dances along the walls and across the ceiling!Published 9 months ago by M. L. Quintin
Another great Fred Astaire movie, this one has a twist since he isn't dancing with Ginger. But he and Jane dance well together.Published 20 months ago by joyce siemens
Quel beau film du temps du cinéma Noir & Blanc. Beau numéro de danse de Monsieur Astaire de Mme PowellPublished on Aug. 8 2013 by Gilles Laplante
A brother-sister dance team go to England to perform at the time of Princess Elizabeth's wedding. Both siblings are devoted to the act and claim to have no interest in romance, but... Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2009 by Kona
The 2001 digitally remastered GoodTimes DVD if far superior in both picture and sound than this 2002 Alpha Video DVD. -- RoyPublished on Jan. 13 2004 by Roy Taghon
This movie would have been a complete failure if Fred Astaire hadn't starred in it. I found it to be exceptionally dull. Read morePublished on April 23 2003
If you love Astaire, you'll love this one!! His amazing dance on the walls and ceiling from the movie has become so famous that, across the years, it has overshadowed the very... Read morePublished on April 5 2003 by Gregory Nyman
I'll never understand why the major studios allow dinky little production companies to release their movies on below standard DVDs. Read morePublished on March 26 2003 by Jennifer M.
It's a very enjoyable Fred Astaire movie and has the dancing on the ceiling episode that is regarded as a movie milestone. Read morePublished on Jan. 27 2003 by Paul Phelps
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