5.0 out of 5 stars a very entertaining and colorful film
Though this film is probably nothing like the real true stoy of Cole Portor's life, it is still entertaining and colorful, with great soongs and costumes. Cary Grant, really shine in this film. It's a great musical with lots of song, dance, and pretty costumes with color.
Published on Jan. 27 2003 by Rosella Ann Myles
3.0 out of 5 stars Music and Performances Are The High Points
One of Broadway's most brilliant songwriters, Cole Porter (1891-1964) worked hard to present an unflappable image to the world--but in truth he was a tremendously complex man, a homosexual who lived with wife Linda Lee Thomas in a marriage of convenience, subject fits of depression, and suffering horrific pain in the wake of a horseback riding accident which left him...
Published on June 17 2004 by Gary F. Taylor
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4.0 out of 5 stars Like.,
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This review is from: Night & Day (DVD)I bought this for my mother-in-law who loves her old movies. An old classic, or so I'm told. She told me she loves it.
5.0 out of 5 stars a very entertaining and colorful film,
5.0 out of 5 stars a very entertaining and colorful film,
1.0 out of 5 stars A total waste of film!,
This review is from: Night & Day (DVD)The forties saw a lot of poor movies supposedly based on the lives of major Broadway composers. Most were saved by fantastic numbers - watch June Allyson's "Thou Swell" in "Words and Music" and you'll see what I mean. But Warners didn't know how to make a movie musical in the forties, and everything here is a waste of time and talent. Cary Grant gets to be Cary Grant - and he often got away from his public persona into a role - "Notorious", "North By Northwest" - but not here. Alexis Smith had to wait until "Follies" on Broadway to prove she could sing, dance, and had fabulously gorgeous legs. Here, another waste. The screenplay is stupid, not merely inaccurate. The colour is handled poorly so that it looks like 20th Century Fox from the 40's, but on a bad day. In general, the direction is careless, some of the photography is quite ill-conceived, and the guest stars, with one exception, belong in small little films or ones where their inadequancies don't glare so horribly. The exception is Mary Martin, who Warners, and Hollywood, in general, wasted time after time. "Time to Hit the Road to Dreamland" with Dick Powell is about the only other filmed song she did that is still bearable.
With so many good, even great, versions of Cole Porter's work - and please don't even think of the recent 'new' biography which is as bad in its way as is this film - it is NOT 'de-lovely" at all - why waste time or money on this major mishmash?
2.0 out of 5 stars I get no kick from this movie,
This review is from: Night & Day (DVD)Very little of the actual Cole Porter exists in "Night and Day," a scrubbed-down version of the legendary Broadway songwriter's life. While Cary Grant is wonderfully charismatic, the movie itself is both fluffy and stretched out, with the holes patched by colourful musical numbers.
We're introduced to Cole (Grant) as he finishes one year at Yale, but disappoints his grandfather by saying that he's quitting to be a songwriter. He and his professor Monty Woolley (played by self) manage to scrounge up the money for a brilliant musical -- only to have World War I break out on opening night, thus destroying the show.
But after being injured, Cole regains his musical skills, with the help of his soon-to-be-wife Linda (Alexis Smith). Soon he's world-famous for his sparkling songs and brilliant dancing... but fame has a price, and Linda is growing tired of being second-fiddle to Cole's career. Things get even worse when he has a crippling fall from a horse.
Given that this movie was made in 1946, Porter gets the deluxe whitewashing -- inner demons, depression, chronic pain, homosexuality and a platonic marriage are all watered down into a typical Hollywood romance. Only the final close-up of Grant -- looking stiff and slightly ominous -- may hint at the lack of a storybook ending.
Unfortunately, the movie before it is rather corny, with melodramatic confrontations and the hokey handling of real-life tragedies (Porter's near-crippling). It's just fluff. And being turned into fluff, there's too little material included to spread around, so the filmmakers patched it with kitschy versions of Porter's songs, all in eyepoppingly garish colours. Okay, I loved that mad tap-dancing number, but that's about it.
Grant plays a purely fantasy Porter, but he does so with suave charm and style, as well as good chemistry with the elegant Alexis Smith. And Monty Woolley -- the real friend, albeit much older -- is fun as a professor with a great love of the theatre. He gets all of the funnier lines too ("The face and chin belong to me -- the beard belongs to the world").
"Night and Day" is an amusing fluff piece with good acting from Grant and Smith, but not much else to recommend it. It's too in love with Porter's songs and Technicolor to register a real story.
2.0 out of 5 stars Night and Day on DVD,
This review is from: Night & Day (DVD)Others have addressed the travesty this movie makes of Cole Porter's life, so I will not rehash. Historically, both Linda and Cole were supposed to have been quite pleased with the flic, which, given the times, probably was the only public reaction they could have had (I'd hope they laughed histerically in private).
On the plus side, we have Alexis Smith as beautiful and elegant as she always was, but younger (presumably Linda Lee Porter suggested her for the role); Jane Wyman vital and sparkling, as far removed from Douglas Sirk as one can imagine; Mary Martin innocently raunchy; Eve Arden putting on a French accent, straight-faced; and about the most gosh-awful-kitschiest rendition of Begin the Beguine I have ever seen, on or off film. Not campy but garish, it becomes fascinatingly repellent .... definitely worth seeing. It is the movie's "Big Number" .... seriously tasteless and ill-conceived, following relatively close on the heels -so to speak- of an acknowledged masterpiece: Begin the Beguine, the "Big Number" in "Broadway Melody of 1940," danced by Eleanor Powell and Fred Astaire.(Available in a pristine transfer to DVD).
What is absolutely shameful is the minimal care evidenced in the movie's transfer to DVD. Scratches and dirt are easily discernible...... worst: whole sections go by in thoroughly faded technicolor, yet there are isolated spots when one is reminded how glorious the process could be. It doesn't appear WB went to a negative but rather picked from various prints in varying degrees of deterioration. I can think of many movies deserving full-fledged restoration before Night and Day,
WB partially redeems itself by including a musical short featuring a singing Desi Arnaz and His Band, and a truly charmless, through-composed oddity called "Musical Movieland." Nonetheless, on the balance, if it came to a choice, I would have opted for a better transfer.
3.0 out of 5 stars Music and Performances Are The High Points,
This review is from: Night & Day (DVD)One of Broadway's most brilliant songwriters, Cole Porter (1891-1964) worked hard to present an unflappable image to the world--but in truth he was a tremendously complex man, a homosexual who lived with wife Linda Lee Thomas in a marriage of convenience, subject fits of depression, and suffering horrific pain in the wake of a horseback riding accident which left him crippled at the peak of his career. Add to this the fact that his lyrics were often censored for film, radio, and records and it seems very odd that 1940s Hollywood would attempt a biography.
What they did, of course, was fictionalize it to the max, reducing the story of his life to a mix of backstage musical and domestic drama--and transforming the tiny and waspish Porter and his icy bride Linda into handsome Cary Grant and lovely Alexis Smith. The result is pure nonsense, of course, but when you tack in a host of Porter classics--fantasy it might be, but it is entertaining enough to watch.
Grant is no singer, but he has considerable charm, and Smith is as always extremely attractive. The supporting cast is remarkably strong, featuring the likes of Jane Wyman, Eve Arden, Dorothy Malone, and Alan Hale--and rare screen appearances by Monty Woolley and Mary Martin, who deliver knockout performances of "Miss Otis Regrets" and "My Heart Belongs To Daddy" respectively. The DVD transfer is reasonable, and although the bonuses are pure fluff they are amusing. While it may be short on fact with a story little more than pure melodrama, the music and performers make NIGHT AND DAY a reasonably pleasant way to spend a rainy afternoon.
GFT, Amazon Reviewer
3.0 out of 5 stars Cary is not Cole,
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still a Romantic Best,
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Night & Day by Michael Curtiz (DVD - 2004)