Sunday, August 23, 2009

Vintage 1930's film: Dancing Lady

I've decided that as a fan of vintage and history, I need a better film education. With that in mind, my husband and I have decided to devote ourselves to watching movies from the 1920s through the 1960s, as well as modern films that depict those times.

Last night, we viewed Dancing Lady (1933) starring Joan Crawford and Clark Gable. Joan looks young and lovely with huge eyes and great legs. Clark has complete leading man sizzle. It also includes some dancing with Fred Astaire and an appearance by Ted Healy and his Stooges (aka the Three Stooges, whose comedy I've never been able to stand). I'm ignorant of the film's other actors, but I swear there was a man who sounded like Winnie the Pooh, so maybe it was Sterling Holloway. In spite of the DVD box cover, this one's in black and white.

The basic plot is that Joan's character, Janie, is working in a Burlesque house when she's spotted by a rich gentleman who wants to give her a hand. She wants to succeed on her own, and eventually begins to dance in the chorus of a Broadway show directed by a Patch (Gable). Will Janey become a star? Will she marry Mr. Rich Man or will Patch turn her head?

I enjoyed this, even though the plot was a little thin and the dance numbers were somewhat silly. Joan could really dance! The costumes didn't knock me dead, although it was still fun looking. One of the dresses had alarming large feathered sleeves (?), and at least one other had too much going on at the neck (see above). But, the dress with Joan on the staircase is fabulous, isn't it?

Pictures from:,,, and

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