A Damsel in Distress DVD
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Directed by George Stevens
Produced in 1937
Main Language - English
Countries & Regions - American film
Fred Astaire is paired with Joan Fontaine's rebellious heiress in this 1937 musical comedy from RKO Pictures. It's a sprightly adaptation of PG Wodehouse's novel, says David Parkinson.
With the box-office tide turning against Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers with Shall We Dance (1937), RKO was more than happy to team the ageing hoofer with 19 year-old Joan Fontaine in George Stevens's sprightly adaptation of a novel by PG Wodehouse. George Burns and Gracie Allen provided comic support, as Fred's musical comedy star tilts his top hat at Fontaine's rebellious heiress. But the American public inexplicably stayed away. It was their loss. The comedy may not have had the screwball zing that was then in vogue, but there are plenty of droll asides on the class system and the notion that Britain and America were two nations divided by a common language. Moreover, Astaire produced nifty dance routines to such George and Ira Gershwin tunes as `A Foggy Day (In London Town)', `Things Are Looking Up' and `Nice Work If You Can Get It', which afforded him the opportunity to do tap and drum solos. Furthermore, Hermes Pan won the last Dance Direction Oscar for the fun house choreography on `Stiff Upper Lip'.
David Parkinson on 21st June 2011
Author of 235 reviews
A 1937 musical comedy from RKO Pictures, A Damsel in Distress sees Fred Astaire play an American dancing star who finds himself falling in love when he shares a cab with a beautiful young English woman (Joan Fontaine) - the daughter of an aristocrat who does not reveal her background. After their meeting, the dancer sets about tracking her down. Also stars real life husband-and-wife team George Burns and Gracie Allen.
Publisher: Odeon Entertainment
Length: 96 mins
Format: DVD B&W
Released: 18th July 2011
Cat No: ODNF270
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