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Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory (Ziegfeld Follies / Till the Clouds Roll By / Three Little Words / Summer Stock / It's Always Fair Weather)

Robert Walker , Van Heflin , Gene Kelly , Charles Walters    Unrated   DVD

List Price: CDN$ 62.40
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Frequently Bought Together

Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory (Ziegfeld Follies / Till the Clouds Roll By / Three Little Words / Summer Stock / It's Always Fair Weather) + 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
Price For Both: CDN$ 84.19

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Product Details

Product Description


Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory is a five-film collection of enjoyable but not-quite-top-tier movies from MGM's peak period between the mid-1940s and mid-'50s. The best films are the two with Gene Kelly. In Summer Stock (1950), he teams with Judy Garland in a traditional "let's put on a show" setting. Garland was in her last MGM film, but she shares a tap duel with Kelly and performs one of her most famous routines, "Get Happy" in a black jacket and fedora. It's Always Fair Weather (1955) features Kelly alongside Dan Dailey and Michael Kidd as three GIs who return from the war, a plot reminiscent of On the Town, another Kelly collaboration with Stanley Donen. The songs aren't much, but highlights include the three GIs' trash-can-lid dance, Cyd Charisse's solo supported by a crew of boxers, and Kelly's number on roller skates, "I Like Myself." Ziegfeld Follies (1946) follows the format of a revue, with a wisp of a plot (producer Florenz Ziegfeld is in heaven imagining his dream revue; he's played by William Powell, who had played the character 10 years earlier in The Great Ziegfeld) and a bunch of diverse musical numbers: Fred Astaire's dances with Charisse, Lucille Bremer, and Gene Kelly (their only screen collaboration till That's Entertainment II in 1976); a water number with Esther Williams; and songs by Judy Garland, Lena Horne, and Kathryn Grayson. Also following the revue format is Till the Clouds Roll By (1946), which features famous performances by Frank Sinatra ("Ol' Man River"), Lena Horne ("Can't Help Lovin' That Man"), and Judy Garland ("Look for the Silver Lining"). Interspersed among the numbers is a lackluster biography of songwriter Jerome Kern. For a more traditional songwriter biography, try Three Little Words (1950), starring Astaire and Red Skelton as Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby, respectively, whose Tin Pan Alley and Broadway songs include "Who's Sorry Now," "My Sunny Tennessee," "I Wanna Be Loved by You," and the title tune. Vera-Ellen is an excellent partner for Astaire, and a young Debbie Reynolds appears as Boop-a-Doop girl Helen Kane.

All the discs are supplemented by new featurettes and classic shorts and cartoons. Deserving special mention is Till the Clouds Roll By, which has been available for years on inferior public-domain DVDs. This version has the best picture by far, and also offers musical outtakes by Judy Garland and Kathryn Grayson. --David Horiuchi

Product Description

DVD Features:
* Ziegfeld Follies (1946)
* Ziegfeld Follies: An Embarassment of Riches
* MGM Short and Cartoons
* Audio Outtakes
* Theatrical Trailers
* Till the Clouds Roll By (1946)
* Till the Clouds Roll By: Real to Reel
* MGM Short and Cartoon
* Audio Outtakes
* Theatrical Trailer
* Three Little Words (1950)
* MGM Short and Cartoon
* Paula Stone's Hollywood USA Radio Promo
* Theatrical Trailer
* Summer Stock (1950)
* Summer Stock: Get Happy!
* MGM Shorts
* Fall in Love Audio Outtake
* Theatrical Trailer
* It's Always Fair Weather (1955)
* It's Always Fair Weather: Going Out On a High Note
* MGM Parade (1955 TV Series)
* MGM Cartoons
* Outtakes
* Theatrical Trailer

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  20 reviews
38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a great bunch of films AND DVDs!!! April 2 2006
By Richardson - Published on Amazon.com
I was lucky enough to preview this set recently and am happy to report that the other folks expecting WB's normal fine print quality will not be dissapointed...they look wonderful. As is the custom at WB there are many extras on each DVD as well. Others have listed them...outakes, vintage clips and featurettes...so I won't re-list those but comment on the new 15 minute featurettes on each film. Well, unlike the dissapointing (IMHO) Busby Berkely bonus featurettes..these are well made, informative and VERY entertaining...probably due to the much higher quality of interviewees....like the ever present Garland expert John Fricke. Current sizzling hot Broadway choreographer and director Casey Nicholaw, who lends his expertise on Summer Stock and It's always fair weather. Susan Stroman , director of the recent movie "The Producers, ads a fresh take on It's always fair weather as well.

The absolute gem (again IMHO) however is the Oscar and Grammy winning songwriter of Mary Poppins, Chitty, Chitty Bang Bang and so many more Richard M Sherman. Mr Sherman's thoughts about Jerome Kern (Till the Clouds Roll By) and Kalmar & Ruby (Three Little Words)go much further than the normal "college professors" on other DVDs. As those two movies are about songwriters...who better than one of the all time greats to comment and frankly he seems to be much more than a hired gun , but an actual fan of these writers and very familiar with their work, lives and the movies in question...raising the bar substantially due to his participation.
47 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb collection of classic MGM musicals..JUDY, GENE, & FRED at their best! March 11 2006
By Eric - Published on Amazon.com
During the Hollywood's golden era, the 'tiffany' of movie studios as MGM, where the motto was "Do it big, do it right, and give it class". They sure did, and when it came to musicals, no one else could come close. They had all the greatest stars of the genre, and whereas musicals from other studios may seem stiff and dated, most of Metro's musical output shines with immortality.

No where is this more evident than in this new boxed set of stellar favorites from Warner Home Video, which is todays 'tiffany' of video labels. Nobody does it better. The care, cleverness & dedication they put into their classic releases is abundant, and each film in this set has been given a sparkling new transfer and is loaded with extras, as is the Warner style.

Not only do you get Judy & Gene in the charming SUMMER STOCK, climaxing with GET HAPPY, but you also get those two and a dozen more Metro stars in the dazzling ZIEGFELD FOLLIES. Gene Kelly's final collaboration with Stanley Donen as co-directors, is the magnificent gem IT'S ALWAYS FAIR WEATHER, with a witty screenplay by Comden & Green, and knockout performances from the entire cast including Cyd Charisse. At last this comes to DVD in 16x9 widescreen with 5.1 audio, and outtakes too! Astaire and Red Skelton team in THREE LITTLE WORDS, which is probably the best and most delightful "composer-bio" ever to come out of Hollywood. It's truthful to the real story of Kalmar and Ruby, and is a joyous blend of great songs and comedic fun. Last but certainly not least is the first legitimate DVD release of TILL THE CLOUDS ROLL BY, MGM's extravaganza built around the music of Jerome Kern. A huge roster of MGM talent is featured in great musical numbers that now finally look and sound terrific.

Although its heartbreaking that the MGM we once knew is no longer, and survives only as a 'label' owned by another studio, we film fans are so fortunate that the great MGM library ended up with the superbly talented folks at Warner Brothers.
42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars details on the bonus features March 21 2006
By joseph Corey - Published on Amazon.com
Ziegfeld Follies

New featurette Ziegfeld Follies: An Embarrassment of Riches

Vintage MGM Crime Does Not Pay short The Luckiest Guy in the World

2 classic MGM cartoons: The Hick Chick, Solid Serenade

Audio-only bonus: outtake songs If Swing Goes, I Go Too, This Heart of Mine and We Will Meet Again in Honolulu

Ziegfeld movies trailer gallery

Till the Clouds Roll By

New featurette Till the Clouds Roll By: Real to Reel

Vintage Fitzpartick Traveltalk short Glimpses of California

Classic MGM Tex Avery cartoon Henpecked Hoboes

Two musical outtake sequences: Judy Garland performing D'Ya Love Me? and Music in the Air (I've Told Ev'ry Little Star/The Song is You) performed by Kathryn Grayson and Johnny Johnston

Theatrical trailer

Three Little Words

New featurette Three Little Words: It's All True

Vintage Fitzpatrick Traveltalk short Roaming Through Michigan

Classic MGM Tex Avery cartoon Ventriloquist Cat

Audio-only bonus: Paula Stone's Hollywood USA radio promo featuring Fred Astaire & Harry Ruby

Theatrical trailer

Summer Stock

New featurette Summer Stock: Get Happy!

Classic MGM cartoon The Cuckoo Clock

Vintage Pete Smith Specialty Short Did'ja Know?

Audio-only bonus: outtake song Fall in Love

Theatrical trailer

It's Always Fair Weather

New featurette It's Always Fair Weather: Going Out on a High Note

3 outtake musical numbers: The Binge/Trashcan Dance (alternate takes), Jack and the Space Giants (with Michael Kidd), Love Is Nothing but a Racket (with Gene Kelly & Cyd Charisse)

Two segments from The MGM Parade featuring Cyd Charisse and Gene Kelly

2 classic MGM cartoons: Deputy Droopy, Good Will to Men

Audio-only bonus: I Thought They'd Never Leave outtake featuring Dolores Grey's unused vocal
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a deal April 25 2006
By Dave - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Although this has been called a mixed bag by some, for the price, you just can't go wrong. Judy & Gene doing the "Portland Fancy" and Judy singing "Get Happy" from "Summer Stock"; Lena Horne singing numbers from "Show Boat," the musical she should have been in; Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire doing their only real on-screen duet in "Ziegfeld Follies" (they pretty much just walked through "That's Entertainment 2"); all these priceless musical numbers must be seen to be believed, all in glowing and restored technicolor. Lots of fun extras as well.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, but not quite May 30 2006
By Thomas C. Hines - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
It is wonderful to see these films finally being released on DVD! The prints are bright, colorful and clean and the soundtracks are sound better than ever. The films themselves are a treasure without any added attractions. However, since so much emphasis is put on special features, let me say that they aren't what they could be for these movies. Consider what the "Zeigfeld Follies" laser disc offered in the way of extras. There is a great deal of original pre-recorded music available from that film, so why not include more or all of it? One disturbing trend I noticed on the short documentaries is a change in the ratio of the screen image. After all of the talk about restoration and letterbox, why show clips in wide screen when the original films were not produced in wide screen. The presentation and restoration of classic films has become so much more important to viewers over the past two decades. Let's don't take steps backwards.

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