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  1. I tend to be purist in my definition of musicals and prefer my song and dance to be integrated into the story and to contribute to the plot. If the songs and dances can be removed and nothing of consequence is lost, then I'd hesitate to call whatever it is a musical -- it might be a story with songs, or a story with dance, or a story with song and dance. But my favourite musicals are not stories at all without the songs - they need the songs (and in some cases the dances) in order to be complete entertainments.
  2. I also really enjoyed watching Peter Lorre dancing in this movie -- it's so out-of-character! Cagney's dancing may have come as a shock to those who first viewed Yankee Doodle Dandy without knowing his stage roots, but seeing Peter Lorre even attempt to dance fascinated me in Silk Stockings. I couldn't help but notice how high he lifted his knees with each step in comparison to the other two, and how the choreographer was okay with this, not demanding more uniformity in his "chorus line." I also noticed that when the other two stood on one leg to waggle an ankle back and forth, Lorre was al
  3. There are plenty of silly musicals on both stage and screen that work on both: I would argue that The Music Man is one of those -- totally ridiculous and yet it works (except maybe for Ronnie Howard --who knew he would grow up to be a great moviemaker?). The ones that annoy me the most are the ones that don't work well in both settings. Lucille Ball in the movie Mame leaps to mind. She's no Angela Lansbury and can't seem to carry a tune in that movie. On the other hand, I really like Barbra Streisand in Hello Dolly! while I find Carol Channing off-putting, so it works both ways. I've never
  4. I liked both Powell and Keeler but I did notice that MGM felt Powell could hold the stage on her own while Warner Brothers didn't seem to have the same faith in Keeler - shunting her off the stage in favour of more spectacle. In a way, though, Keeler's performance is sometimes more pleasant to watch than Powell's as her dance in pure and simple whereas Powell, in her musicality, can sometimes get herself into some awkward-looking positions: the moment during which she's tapping and slapping her thighs leaps to mind. That movement causes her to hunch over and her feet look like little old lad
  5. I agree with most of the former comments in that this musical does seem to make a bit of a joke about money, presents an escape from the real world, and presents a modest backstage scene in view of the Code. What I don't get about the clip is what Anna Held is doing with that mirror in her number. What is the point of that? It seems to annoy her audience rather than dazzle them ... on the other hand, I seem to remember something like that in a Cabaret number. though whether that's in the movie or in one of the stage productions I've seen I'm not sure.
  6. I think Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is my most-watched pure movie musical. Love the singing and the dancing and all the colour-coding in the characters' costumes. My most-watched "Broadway" movie musical is probably Fiddler on the Roof, since it's also my most-watched stage musical. I do like how the movie fleshes out the world with real animals and wider scope for the action. Never thought to ponder where it was filmed -- will have to check it out during this course.
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