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11 Singin' in the Rain 1952 
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Post 11 Singin' in the Rain 1952
From Zeppelin on the cinematic journey

I have no great love of musicals. In fact, you could probably even say that I dislike them. Singing and dancing have never impressed me very much, (Although I can still enjoy them) and in the very few classic musicals I've seen I have found that they often lacked greater depth beyond the musical numbers. So it was with some hesitation that I decided to revisit Singin' in the Rain. Considered by many to be the greatest musical ever made, (And by far the highest on the top 1000 at #11) I saw Singin' when I was a but a lad, and remembered absolutely nothing of it today, so I was essentially seeing it for the first time.

First, I'd like to say that I loved the musical numbers. The Broadway Melody, (Especially Kelly dancing with Cyd Charisse) the first romantic dance between Kelly and Reynolds, and most of all the title song all impressed me and held my attention fully. The other songs I enjoyed, but not as much as the above three. However, like everyone else on the planet, I'd like to give a special shout-out to Kelly's Singin' in the Rain. Absolutely enchanting, magical sequence, and I was a little heart-broken when it ended. If they just streched that out to about an hour and released it as the movie I would've applauded at the end and given it an instant 10/10. Just an amazing scene in every way.

While I'm being optimistic, I should also mention that I found both Kelly and Reynolds to be charming and I liked seeing them together. Kelly especially had loads of screen presence, and I found my favorite scenes to be the ones where Kelly was alone or had just one dancing partner.

Unfortunately for me, Donen and Kelly had to go and fill the rest of their movie with not-dancing. At best, I found the musical intermissions to be mildly enjoyable (i.e.: Reynolds and Kelly sharing a moment). At worst, I found them to be mind-bogglingly annoying. Yes, I understand that Lina Lamont and Cosmo Brown were supposed to be funny. It's a darn shame that I barely even cracked a smile at either of them. I found both characters to be one-dimensional and obnoxious. At least Cosmo could dance. Now if only he could shut his big mouth and find something to do other than be super-loyal sidekick who lives only to serve the main character. Lina was worse. For a feel-good movie, they sure couldn't have picked a more feel-bad villain. There was nothing entertaining about her acting, voice, or charcter. I wish I could've fond her funny, but I didn't, so all I was left with was a bitchy, obnoxious, emotionless plot device.

And that's my biggest problem with Singin' in the Rain: All of the comedic and dramatic moments did nothing for me. The comedy especially. I can't remember a single time I did more than smile at the jokes, and even smiles were rare. Often, the jokes would only make me like the movie less. The drama, to me, was also unbelievable but compared to the funny moments it was almost miraculous. At least I kind of enjoyed the romance between Kelly and Reynolds. Maybe they should've spent more time on that and less time on how funny unsynchronized sound is.

I realize just how much I'm swimming against the tide on this one, but except for the fantastic musical numbers I just don't see it. Maybe I'm a total curmudgeon, I don't know, but I only half liked it, so I only feel right giving a half score. 5/10, and an apology to anyone if I just attacked a sacred cow. Guess musicals just aren't my thing.


Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:28 am
Post Re: 11 Singin' in the Rain 1952
I saw Singin' in the Rain for the first time just a few weeks ago. Musicals have never been my genre of choice, and my viewing of them hadn't gone any further than The Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins, and the Disney Renaissance animated films. I had seen all the lists proclaiming Singin' to be one of the greatest films of all time, but I remained unconvinced; I thought of the old musicals I had always seen playing on TV and prepared myself for something corny and dated.

I was in for a huge surprise.

Every single second of Singin' in the Rain worked for me on at least one level. I was enchanted by its musical numbers, all of which are nothing short of flawless (my favorites being Fit as a Fiddle, Make 'Em Laugh, Good Morning, Moses Supposes, the entire Broadway Melody sequence, and of course the magical Singin' in the Rain). Kelly, O'Connor, and Reynolds exhibit tremendous dancing skills and have singing voices to match.

These numbers are on their own enough for me to recommend the film, but there is so much more to see here. The story is actually interesting, set during a big turning point in film history. The dialogue is refreshingly modern, and is delivered by actors with pitch-perfect comedic timing. Speaking of actors, there's not a single weak performance in the bunch; Gene Kelly as Don, Jean Hagen as Lina, and Donald O'Connor as Cosmo are particular stand-outs for me. I could go on and share a few of this film's many stand-out moments, but I think Singin' (like any comedy) works best when you don't know what to expect.

Simply put, Singin' in the Rain is one of my most deliriously happy movie-going experiences in memory. I've watched it several times since that first viewing, and each time the film seems just as fresh as the first.

To anyone who hasn't seen it already, consider this film the ultimate pick-me-up.

10/10


Last edited by GunBehindTheToilet on Sun Jul 26, 2009 2:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Sun Jul 26, 2009 2:34 pm
Post Re: 11 Singin' in the Rain 1952
You want to know what a "Great Film" is?

It is one that the whole family can watch and get genuine satisfaction out of. Pixar has mastered this art and I have just figured out that Singin' in the Rain had done this way back in 1951.

My kids (a 5-year-old and a 3-year-old) are absolutely in love with this film. You'd think I was kidding if I told you that my boy, at random, starts singing "Beautiful Girls" and that my girl wakes up singing "Good Morning." I'm not. Not only that, I'm convinced they want to start tap dancing.

My wife used to dance, not only that, she would watch this film with her grandfather. Plenty of nostalgia with her.

For me, not only am I entranced by the songs and the dancing, it is a good story. I mean, they are ripping on actors who pretend where they come from and what they do. I feel the ultimate moral of the story is do what you love, do it with ganas, and you will succeed...or at least be happy.

Just watch Mr. Gene Kelly in every single one of his song and dances. I get the feeling that he absolutely loves what he is doing. Maybe he is a great actor...maybe he genuinely loves it...maybe it's a combination of both. Either way...it makes for a great show.

It is the ultimate feel good movie...really.


Sat Sep 12, 2009 2:32 am
Post Re: 11 Singin' in the Rain 1952
You know there's more that should be said about Gene Kelly.

You don't see talent like that around anymore. The guy was acting, dancing, singing, choreographer, and co-director of the film.

Maybe I'm overpraising the guy, but he is really impressive. No one really comes to mind in the present day that can do as many things for film and do them well.


Tue Dec 15, 2009 5:35 pm
Post Re: 11 Singin' in the Rain 1952
“Singing in the Rain” (1952)*

The cast and crew of a film company are making a transition from silent to ‘talkies’. Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) can make the move, but his on-screen lady Lina Lamont (Jean Hagen) has a voice for silent pictures. After their initial production is viciously maligned in pre-screenings, no one’s sure what’s next. Enter Kathy, (Debbie Reynolds) whose voice charms the masses. Not only that, but she’s an off-screen love interest for Don. This is a very enjoyable romp behind the scenes of movie making and the conflict of personalities therein. Debbie Reynolds and Gene Kelly couldn’t have been better cast.

Awf Hand give four out of four stars and adds –Now that song is stuck in my head, but, Oh those visuals…

*Time Magazine top 100 films of all time AND Yahoo’s 100 movies to see before you die.


Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:57 pm
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