Subject: Warner Baxter and Alice Faye on sale for limited time




TODAY'S SPECIAL

King Of Burlesque (1936)
Starring Warner Baxter and Alice Faye

Beautiful print and will play in all DVD players.
Warner Baxter plays the ambitious producer of a burlesque show who rises to the big time on Broadway. Alice Faye is the loyal burleycue singer who helps make Baxter a success. His head turned by sudden fame, Baxter falls under the spell of a society woman (Mona Barrie) who has theatrical aspirations of her own. She marries Baxter, then convinces him to produce a string of "artistic" plays rather than his extravagant musical revues. The plays are flops, and the woman haughtily divorces Baxter. Faithful Alice Faye, who'd gone to London when her ex-beau was married, returns to the penniless Baxter. She and her burlesque buddies team up to pull Baxter out of his rut and put him on top again.
Director: Sidney Lanfield

Writers: Gene Markey, Harry Tugend, James Seymour, Vina Delmar, Bartlett Cormack, Finley Peter Dunne, Philip Dunne, H.W. Hanemann, William Hurlbut, Wallace Smith, Jack Wagner

Stars: Warner Baxter, Alice Faye, Jack Oakie, Mona Barrie, Arline Judge, Dixie Dunbar, Gregory Ratoff, Herbert Mundin, Fats Waller, Nick Long Jr., Kenny Baker, Charles Quigley, Paxton Sisters, Shaw and Lee
Academy Awards, USA 1936

Nominee
Best Dance Direction
Sammy Lee
For "Lovely Lady" and "Too Good to Be True".

Songs include:

Shooting High
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Played during the opening and end credits and often in the score
Performed by Alice Faye, Jack Oakie, Al Shaw, Sam Lee and Warner Baxter
Reprised by Alice Faye and Chorus
Also danced by Gareth Joplin and then by Nick Long Jr.

Whose Big Baby Are You?
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Sung by Alice Faye and Chorus
Reprised by Alice Faye, Jack Oakie, Warner Baxter, Dixie Dunbar, Kenny Baker, Arline Judge and Chorus

Spreading Rhythm Around
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Sung by the Chorus in rehearsal, Alice Faye

Lovely Lady
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Sung by Kenny Baker and Chorus

I Love to Ride the Horses on a Merry-Go-Round
Music by Lew Pollack
Lyrics by Jack Yellen
Sung by Alice Faye and Herbert Mundin

Too Good to Be True
Music by Jimmy McHugh
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Sung and Danced by Dixie Dunbar
Reprised by Fats Waller and his band
Danced by Gregory Ratoff and Jack Oakie

Alabamy Bound
Music by Ray Henderson
Lyrics by Buddy G. DeSylva and Bud Green
Sung by the Chorus Girls

Sweet Georgia Brown
Music by Ben Bernie, Kenneth Casey and Maceo Pinkard
Music played for a skit and danced by Alice Faye and the Paxton Sisters

Remade in 1943 as Hello, Frisco, Hello (1943) with John Payne in the lead role. Alice Faye and Jack Oakie reprised their "heroine" and "sidekick" roles in the remake.
Vina Delmar's unpublished story was entitled "The Day Never Came," which was one of the film's working titles; the other working title was Blue Chips. The film was under preparation by Fox Film Corp. in 1934 as a Erich Pommer production. An early draft of the screenplay was entitled "Mr. Manhattan." Irving Cummings was originally scheduled to direct, but by the time shooting was to begin, he had not sufficiently recovered from a recent operation. In November 1935, Darryl Zanuck wrote a memo to the Screen Achievements Bulletin complaining that they had included too many contributing writers in their listings, in view of the regulation that a writer had to contribute at least 10% of the film to be listed as a contributor. In subsequent Screen Achievements Bulletin listing, only William Hurlbut was listed as a contributor, in addition to the writers who received screen billing. Victor Baravalle, the head of M-G-M's music department, was loaned to Fox to be the musical director of this film.
Here we see Faye early in her career as a Jean Harlow knock-off, with platinum blonde hair and pencil-thin eyebrows. Not too long after this film, her appearance was normalized and she began singing in a lower key which made her voice so much richer. I think she was responsible for a whole new trend for female singers. Gone was the high-pitched, nasal sound, popular in the 1920s and early 30s.
For fans of tap dancing, you can watch Dixie Dunbar, whose career never amounted to much, and also there is a nice performance by juvenile Gareth Joplin, on a level equal to that of any adult performer, but who evidently did not have much of a film career either.
Order this rarely-seen and hard-to-find classic today for the low price of $5.99.
New Additions At Zeus:
Bomba The Jungle Boy (1949)

Stars: Johnny Sheffield, Peggy Ann Garner, Onslow Stevens

Inspired by the adventure-book series by Roy Rockwood, Monogram's Bomba the Jungle Boy was the first of a series of twelve "Bomba" pictures. Johnny Sheffield, formerly "Boy" in the Tarzan pictures, stars as Bomba. Another former child performer, Peggy Ann Garner, co-stars as Pat Harland, who with her father George (Onslow Stevens) has arrived in Africa on a photographic expedition. Bomba ends up rescuing Pat from a wide variety of jungle villains. Much of the film is built around stock footage from a 1930 documentary, Africa Speaks. Economically produced, Bomba the Jungle Boy proved a profitable beginning for one of Monogram's most successful series.

Bombardier (1943)

Stars: Pat O'Brien, Randolph Scott, Anne Shirley

A major moneymaker for RKO Radio, Bombardier stars Pat O'Brien and Randolph Scott as trainers at a school for bomber pilots. O'Brien and Scott argue over teaching methods, while their students vie for the affections of Anne Shirley. O'Brien's methods prove sound during a bombing raid over Tokyo. Scott and his crew are captured and tortured by the Japanese, but the mortally wounded Scott manages to set fire to a gas truck, providing a perfect target for his fellow bombardiers. Stylistically, Bombardier is one of the most schizophrenic of war films, with moments of subtle poignancy (the death of trainee Eddie Albert) alternating with scenes of ludicrous "Yellow Peril" melodrama (the Japanese literally hiss through their teeth as they torture the helpless Americans). Though it can't help but seem dated today, Bombardier remains an entertaining propaganda effort (the film is sometimes erroneously listed as the debut of Robert Ryan, who'd actually been appearing before the cameras since 1940).


The Great Lover (1931)

Stars: Adolphe Menjou, Irene Dunne, Ernest Torrence

No relation to the 1949 Bob Hope comedy of the same name, The Great Lover stars that master of sartorial splendor, Adolphe Menjou. Menjou plays a famed opera singer, better known for his sexual proclivities than his theatrical performances. He sets his sights on the opera company's ingenue, novice singer Irene Dunne. Menjou's love for Dunne is genuine--the first time he's ever permitted himself such an emotion--but his past misdeeds catch up with him. Dunne ultimately finds happiness in the arms of arrow-collar leading man Neil Hamilton. The Great Lover was directed by Harry Beaumont, the man responsible for so many of MGM's early talkie musicals.

Grief Street (1931)

Stars: Barbara Kent, John Holland, Dorothy Christy

In this mystery-thriller, set on Broadway, a cynical reporter looks into the killing of a New York actor who was found strangled in his dressing room. The reporter also must deal with the death of the lead actress, who is shot. One more person dies before he can solve the murders and drag the murderer into the police.
The Guardsman (1931)

Stars: Alfred Lunt, Lynn Fontanne, Roland Young

The legendary theatrical team of Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne made their only starring screen appearance in this 1931 adaptation of Ferenc Molnar's The Guardsman. The Lunts are appropriately cast as a famous husband-and-wife acting duo, the husband of which suspects the wife of infidelity. To find out for certain, he disguises himself as an amorous Russian guardsman, complete with handlebar mustache. After an evening of paradise, Lunt confesses his subterfuge to Fontanne. She says she knew all the time, but that gleam in her eye opens up quite a few doubts which are never truly resolved. The fabled "naturalism" of the Lunts appears slightly strained under the probing eye of the camera lens, but their seemingly ad-libbed repartee sequences are a joy to behold. The Guardsman served as the basis for the Oscar Straus operetta The Chocolate Soldier, which itself was filmed in 1943 with Nelson Eddy and Rise Stevens.

Gold Dust Gertie (1931)

Stars: Winnie Lightner, Ole Olsen, Chic Johnson

Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson's final film for Warner Bros. is as much a vehicle for comedienne Winnie Lightner as it is for the venerable vaudeville team. The premise: Gertie (Lightner) marries Harlan (Johnson), then divorces him to marry Guthrie (Olsen), Harlan's partner in a bathing-suit manufacturing business. After Gertie dumps Guthrie, he weds Lucille (Vivian Oakland), while Harlan ties the knot with Lucille's sister Mabel (Dorothy Christy). Several years pass before Gertie re-enters Harlan and Guthrie's lives, demanding back alimony. Since the partners have never informed their henpecking wives that they've been married before, the fur really begins to fly when Lucille and Mabel spot Gertie in a variety of compromising situations with their spouses. The laughs multiply when Gertie pursues her two ex-hubbies on an ocean liner, then descends upon them at a Florida swimsuit convention. Olsen and Johnson seem uncomfortable doing what is essentially Laurel and Hardy material (Ole Olsen even sports a mustache, a la Hardy), but they invest their roles with their usual manic enthusiasm. Gold Dust Gertie winds up with a slapstick speedboat chase, consisting mainly of stock footage from the recently completed Joe E. Brown comedy Top Speed.
James Garner

Alfred Adam

Ken Adam
As a production designer, you offer a form of escapism that is often more exciting than reality.

Ronald Adam

Claire Adams

Edie Adams
(on falling in love with Ernie Kovacs) Here was this guy with the big moustache, the big cigar, and the silly hat. I thought, "I don't know what this is, but it's for me."

Ernie Adams

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