Swing Time

Swing Time

DVD - 2005
Average Rating:
8
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Fred Astaire plays a gambler intent on raising $25,000 in New York in order to marry his fiance back home. Romantic complications occur when he meets dancing teacher, Ginger Rogers. Memorable songs include "The Way you look tonight".
Publisher: [United States] : Turner Home Entertainment Co. ; Burbank, Ca. : Warner Bros. Entertainment : Distributed by Warner Home Video, c2005
ISBN: 9780780639881
078063988X
Branch Call Number: DVD F Swi

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l
lukasevansherman
Feb 27, 2017

Come for the singing and dancing, stay for the blackface! Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers made a bunch of films together, but 1936's "Swing Time" is often considered the best. The two cliches that you hear are that she gave him sex and he gave him class and that she did everything he did but backwards and in high heels. For a modern viewer, "Swing Time" is both redolent of a more romantic era in movie making (One that "La La Land" found a great deal of traction exploiting.) and corny as hell. If you can get best the slim plot, the singing and dancing is pretty great and the soundtrack includes the classic "The Way You Look Tonight," written by Jerome Kern and Dorothy Fields. Helen Broderick and Victor Moore provided good support, and George Stevens ("A Place in the Sun," "Giant") directs. There is a sequence in which Fred Astaire appears in blackface, which does make it hard to unequivocally recommend the film because, well, racism. Zadie Smith recently borrowed the title for her 2016 novel, which has a lot to say about race and identity.

u
UncommonDissent
Dec 23, 2016

Probably my favorite film from these two. Great songs, dancing and comedy. I believe the song "The Way You Look Tonight" from this movie was nominated for an Oscar...

LPL_ShirleyB Oct 11, 2016

There's nothing like context! Take a 21st century view of a 1936 movie...discomfort, thanks to the homage to Bill Robinson's Bojangles. And still the dancing and music are unparalleled. I recommend reading the forthcoming book Swing Time by Zadie Smith for a contemporary view. Peace!

r
RescueDog
Aug 16, 2016

Lots of great music. Lots of great dancing. Also has humor. Astaire wasn't the best singer, though.

t
ThomasJWhiting
Jul 14, 2016

GREAT 1936 b/w film pairing once again Fred Astaire (at age 37) and Ginger Rogers (at 25).
This is another terrific movie of theirs which I rate way up there with 1935's 'Top Hat', but I still give 'Easter Parade - from 1948 (so they had lots more time to perfect their act) - the very highest rating.
Lots of fun - humor, music, dancing, staging, everything. I particularly enjoyed the staging for 'A Fine Romance' set in snowy woods near New Amsterdam Lodge.
And it's always great to see Ginger in those fabulous dresses where she uses one hand to lift the hem to show off her legs while spinning and twirling.
A funny visual with lipstick all over Fred's face after he kisses her. Also in 'The Way You Look Tonight' with Ginger's fab red hair totally covered in thick white shampoo.
The Bojangles of Harlem tune was interesting with Fred in somewhat subdued blackface (no white lips) and with a totally white lady chorus line - glad that it's not clipped from the film.
For some reason, I always turn closed caption subtitles on - even though I'm a native English speaker. Perhaps it frees up my mind a little to look around more at other film aspects. Somewhat odd that they don't include them on the songs. Seems that would be a great add for non-English speaking viewers...
At any rate, this was a great view and I'm checking to see if there are any more Astaire/Rogers films I haven't seen yet.

g
garycornell
Jun 29, 2014

How could they miss with stars like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers singings such songs as Pick Yourself Up, The Way You Look Tonight and my favorite, A Fine Romance. Astaire does a solo dance with him dancing to his shadow, which will be in the history books of Broadway Musicals. A really good time with a wonderful couple in Astaire and Rodgers. It just doesn't get any better than these two in a movie musical.

d2013 Jun 16, 2013

What a pair... dancing royalty. Loved it!

k
KarenW
Nov 10, 2010

My absolute favorite Astaire and Rogers movie! A performer and gambler travels to New York City to raise the $25,000 he needs to marry his fiancée, only to become entangled with a beautiful aspiring dancer. One of the most beautifully shot scenes about romance in the snow has the wonderful song called "This is a fine romance."

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