- Canadian Essential: Chosen by the Amazon.ca editors as one of the 50 Canadian Essentials in DVD.
Deanna Durbin: Sweetheart Pack
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The girl they called "Winnipeg's Sweetheart," Deanna Durbin, captured the hearts of movie fans everywhere with her irresistible charm and golden voice. From her debut in 1939 to the release of her last film in 1944, Deanna was an international superstar and box-office sensation. Then at the height of her fame, she walked away from Hollywood forever. Now her movie magic lives on in this special 6-film set, Deanna Durbin Sweetheart Pack. This rare treasure includes some of her best-loved films, including the Academy Award nominated Three Smart Girls; First Love, a modern riff on the classic Cinderella story; It Started with Eve, a tender-hearted musical farce; Lady on a Train, a crazy who-done-it; and Can't Help Singing, the film that takes Deanna out to the Old West in search of romance and adventure. All the music, romance and laughter is yours to own in the collection that's a treat for movie lovers and a must own for fans of one of Hollywood's most cherished legends.
The highest-paid female star in the world at age 14 and retired from show business at 27, Deanna Durbin, "Winnipeg's Sweetheart," was a fresh and joyful presence in some of the most charming musicals of the late Depression years. This five-movie set, long-awaited by her still-enthusiastic fans, includes her hit debut, Three Smart Girls.
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Top Customer Reviews
"Three Smart Girls"(released in Dec/36) was Deanna's major debut on screen and she,as they say,murdered them at the box office.Her major attributes were her freshness,her utterly disarming charm and of course that angelic voice.She could sing the NYC telephone book and it would have sounded beautiful.All the fabulous attributes that made her a star are here in spades for all to see,as we literally see a star born before our amazed eyes.The plot is relatively simple.Three girls who live with their mother in Switzerland,plot to get back their bon vivant of a father,engaged to be married to a boor of a social climber,in New York.It co-starred Mischa Auer,Charles Winninger,Nan Grey and a very young Ray Milland,among others.Five stars.
"Something in the Wind"(released in July/47)has Deanna as a female disc jockey by the name of Mary Collins(the camera really makes hay with her opening number perched on a desk.Maybe she should have been a desk jockey?).It seems the recently deceased owner of the radio station has left a substantial sum to a Ms.Collins;Deanna's aunt(who she lives with),not her.His grandson who now runs the station is none too happy about the situation and mistakenly thinks Deanna is the beneficiary.Alot of funny mistaken circumstances come out this film until it winds down to its conclusion.Read more ›
I found it to be a great buy, witty and charming, and enjoyed by various age groups. I wanted to purchase more of her movies however, although you can buy all of them (about 21) on the United Kingdom Amazon site, this is the only one avaliable in Canada so far. The ones in England are in zone 2 and not playable on most DVD's in Canada. Sadly Canada does not boost Canadian artists or recognize contributions by many of their own, unless there is some sort of controversy created. I never knew that she once was more popular/well known than Shirley Temple or that she was Winston Churchill's favorite star. (She also held the highest paid actress title for decades)
For a little more background I am attaching a clip from the IMDb site:
"The girl who would be known as "Winnipeg's Sweetheart" was born at Grace Hospital on December 4, 1921, as Edna Mae Durbin. In her early childhood there were no obvious signs that one day she would be a bigger box office attraction than Shirley Temple. Renamed Deanna Durbin for show business purposes, by age 14 she was the most highly paid female star in the world. Her major motion pictures were Three Smart Girls (1936), Mad About Music (1938) and That Certain Age (1938). By the time she was 18 her income was $250,000 a year. Her voice was often described as "natural and beautiful" and her version of "One Fine Day" from Madame Butterfly, with Leopold Stokowski conducting the orchestra, became a classic. Deanna was a Hollywood star in every way. There were Deanna Durbin dolls and dresses.Read more ›
I had never before watched a Deanna Durbin film, and thought it was high time I had a look at something by this Canadian girl who took Hollywood by storm in the 1930s -- and helped pull Universal out of bankruptcy.
I really enjoyed this 6-film set -- more than I thought I would. I was expecting light fare, sentimental tales with some reasonably good singing, but got something much better. Several of these films border on screwball comedy -- and Durbin is pretty good at it! And the singing! What a voice this woman had, even as a young teenager! Knocking out opera tunes and other songs in an operatic style, with a beauty and power that is hard to believe -- and I'm not much of a fan of operatic singing. And indeed, except for one or two places where the singing style seemed far too grand for the situation (e.g., the first song in her first film seemed cloying and syrupy-soprano, and I worried that the whole set would be an entertainment bust at that point), the style is worked carefully into the plot of each movie -- where she is often a trained or aspiring singer -- and in that context, it works. So if you are turned off by the first number in the first film, don't give up -- stay tuned and you will be glad you did.
I won't go over the plots of all these stories, as they are covered in detail in other reviews here on Amazon.ca and on Amazon.com. And people can consult the IMDb for more information. But this set of films has just the right range. Durbin was in films only from 1936 to 1948; the films here cover from 1936 to 1947.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Surprisingly quite funny and well acted.
Deanna Durbin's first role in a real movie.
I have always liked this actress, so it was nice to find a whole collection of her films on one disc. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Patricia
The DVD's arrived in perfect shape and were also on time. These movies are a huge hit with my whole family. It would be awesome to see more of her movies in collections like this!Published on Feb. 4 2014 by red'nwhite
Well finally some movies that I have waited for from those old years are coming out. I have Three Smart Girls, and Three Smart Girls Grow Up. Read morePublished on July 8 2004 by Bruce Holt
Finally! We, devoted fans of Deanna Durbin, will be able to own her wonderful movies on DVD! I disagree, though, with the reviewer who stated that SOMETHING IN THE WIND was one of... Read morePublished on June 21 2004 by R. Gerlach
Unlike what Amazon's page and another reviewer indicate, it seems that in this DVD set "100 Men and a Girl" has now been replaced by "Something in the Wind. Read morePublished on May 30 2004
Although she is little known today, Deanna Durbin was one of the most popular stars of the 1930s, a pretty teenager with a perky personality and a much-admired operatic singing... Read morePublished on May 14 2002 by Gary F. Taylor
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