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Lena Horne plays a rising club singer in this jazzy musical. Cab Calloway, Fats Waller and Dooley Wilson co-star.
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Top Customer Reviews
This all black film may not be a masterpiece in terms of its cinematic technique, but it captures more than a dozen performances, each of which can itself be termed a masterpiece. Horne rendition of "Stormy Weather" is singularly, powerfully erotic. Robinson is great and has several fantastic numbers (he's obviously getting old, but he still has a ton of energy). Many other great black performers grace the screen, among them Fats Waller Katherine Dunham, Ada Brown, and the Nicholas Brothers, who deliver a dance that equals anything either Astaire or Kelly accomplished. Dooley Wilson does not sing, but he has a very funny supporting role (the film delivers big time in laughs, including a very amusing blackface scene). As many hugely entertaining performances there are in the first three-quarters, the film shifts into high gear when Cab Calloway shows up. I absolutely love this guy, one of the weirdest and most original stylists that ever existed in America. But it's not just his appearance that ups the ante. The film has an amazing sense of pace, and it builds steadily to a musical finale which can only be described as orgasmic. It was thrilling to be able to see the talent actors and all the skills offered through their dancing and singing abilities. All of the dance numbers and costumes really represented the time period. The way the dancers moved were both creative and unique, especially indisputably impressive Nicholas Brothers.Read more ›
The plot is a trifle to be sure.The star Bill Robsinson is sitting on his front porch with some young relatives reminiscing about his career,which is told in extended flashbacks.Each flashback is filled with various musical numbers by his co-stars and/or himself.This continues unabated until the pictures' closing moments.
The producer and director give all acts ample time to showcase their talents throughout and in most cases are given at least two numbers each;in Bill Robsinsons'and Lena Hornes' cases it is multiple numbers.Of course we all know the legend of Bill Robinson,his superior terpsichorean abilities and the inspiration he gave(and still gives)to so many dancers throughout the years,both black and white.Lena Horne was just coming into her own and she is showcased beautifully throughout the film with several numbers to her credit.Each song is sung in her intimitable style along with the famous title song.
Several other acts appear here,some well known others not.The vaudeville team of Miller and Lyles puts in a funny appearance doing their broken down car sketch.The background group of dancers are the Katherine Dunham Dance Troupe.Katherine herself sings and leads the troupe visibly in every number.Legendary Fats Waller drops by to sing a song with famous songstress Ada Brown and one with his band.Read more ›
The only lowlight is the minstrel jalopy routine, which is an an emabarrassment in this day and age.
I would take this movie a desert island.
Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
Video Release Date: May 20, 2003
Director: Andrew L. Stone
Katherine Dunmam and her troope
This is an old Black and White, originally copyrighted in 1943, copyright renewed in 1971 by Twentieth Century Fox from a screenplay by Frederick Jackson and Ted Koehler.
Lena Horne was young and beautiful, playing a singing star who met a soldier returning from the First World War (Robinson), and they fell in love, but she doesn't want to give up her singing career to get married and settle down. They go their own ways. The story continues through the beginning of the Second World War, when they finally finalize their dreams.
No one ever sang Stormy Weather like Lena Horne.
This film is great for the music and dancing, and because of the energy the cast puts into it. It is an out-and-out musical, with an all black cast. Fine entertainment. If the film were made today political correctness would prevent some of the language, because of "ebonics" rather than epithets or bad language, and the minstrel scenes with colored people using blackface in their acts would never be tolerated today, although they, too, were innocent.
Too bad we've gone so far that we've lost our sense of humor in our attempt to placate the super-sensitivity of a few.
Lena Horne has to be one of the great singers of the last century.
Joseph (Joe) Pierre
Most recent customer reviews
This is wonderful. I wish these folks were around, young, and
on the Radio and Screen today. Put this on DVD PLEASE, my VHS tape will wear out from
introducing todays... Read more
...as my mother used to say, "you buy the bit." Because movies of the 1940's featuring black artists playing actual characters and not specialty acts were still a rarity (America... Read morePublished on Nov. 22 2002 by Chris Aldridge
Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, Lena Horne, Cab Calloway, and Fats Waller. That line up alone is a historic line-up. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2002 by rodog63jr
This movie is a wonderful testament to the talent of African Americans who had great difficulty finding quality vehicles to show off their talent and genius. Read morePublished on Aug. 25 2002
The focus here is less on a brilliant story told than on showcasing the talents of many African American entertainers, who at the time (1943) found little opportunities to bring... Read morePublished on Aug. 8 2002 by Michael Mathena
This was one of my favorite African American films. Bill Robinson was great as usual. Lena Horne was fab-u-lous in her rendition of a broken hearted heroin, singing about her long... Read morePublished on July 4 2002
Vaguely based on the life of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson himself, STORMY WEATHER offers the story of a WWI vet who falls in love with a singer--and under her influence goes... Read morePublished on May 14 2002 by Gary F. Taylor