Film 101 in the “1001 Films to See Before You Die” challenge is 1936’s “Swing Time”. My first look at both Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers but this wasn’t there first time together. In fact, this was their seventh time working together! And I did find this film to drag very much. Especially the dance scenes. I don’t know if I’m saying this because I was half asleep watching this or for any other reasons. Even the opening titles seemed to go on a bit. The dance scenes were fun to watch, especially the “Never Gonna Dance” scene, but they did go on forever. One thing I have to question, Lucky’s Dad – Was he drunk or did the actor have a speech impediment? I found it very hard to understand what he was saying half the time. I even got to the point where I was fed up of seeing him on my screen. Another thing that I can remember was…. Black-Face! But what was odd was that Lucky didn’t have the oversized white lips that you usually see. One last thing, why is it that women in films from the olden times have to have two lovers, one nice guy and one jerk, and she always goes with the jerk knowing it’s gonna end badly? I’ve never understood that. Speaking of the “Never Gonna Dance” scene, that dance was shot so many times that it actually made Ginger Rogers’s feet bleed! So if you like singing, dancing and mixed relationships then this film is for you. If you have seen this film then let me know what you thought of it in the comments. Here is what I have to say while watching 1936’s “Swing Time”.
Film – Swing Time
Year – 1936
Director – George Stevens
Staring – Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Victor Moore
IMDb Rating – 7.7/10
My Rating – 6/10
Length – 103 min (1h 43min)
Genre – Comedy, Musical, Romance
These opening title credits feel long
I have no idea what he just said
No encore for yous! I’ve gotta get married
“My talent is gambling” – I didn’t know that was a talent
You’re wearing last seasons trousers! And no cufflinks
They’re making Lucky miss his own wedding!
Cuffs aren’t meant to go on trousers
I probably shouldn’t be watching a film if I’m half asleep
The wedding’s off
It’s off! Good! Means I can gamble some more
Door bell that has no bell?!?
Nobody nowadays is concerned about being the laughing stock of the town anymore
Excuse me while I break all your bones
$25,000 and you can marry my daughter
Is his name Lucky or is it John?
Overlapping dialogue! I can’t work out who to focus on
I still have no idea what Lucky’s dad is saying
Thanks for all your money! Good luck getting to New York
Never try using buttons as money
Who has change for 25 cents?
Excuse me while I steal from your purse
No one ever reports about people stealing 25 cents nowadays?
I’m on his side because he’s dressed nicer than you and because he’s a man!
Better return her quarter back to her
This boss really wants to fire everyone he sees
“Swan?” That’s the best insult you have for him
$45 for a dance!
Lucky gets introduced to his dance instructor… Penny!
Teach me the longest dance you have
Always start everything with your right foot first
“Are you accusing me of eating your sandwich?”
This floor and my shoes – Not a good combination
Better sing to my instructor to convince her to continue teaching me
Penny’s been fired for being mean to Lucky
“My sandwich got into him” – That’s a sexy innuendo
She’s fired as well
I’ve been faking not knowing how to dance!
Now to actually dance to save Penny’s job
Lots of dancing is happening right now
I’m still half asleep
Is it really over? Her feet are barely bleeding
Time for Lucky’s dad to get the receptionist’s job back
He’s just given Lucky & Penny a audition at Silver Sandels
And the receptionist is still fired!!!
And I still have no idea what Lucky’s Dad is saying
No dinner jacket no dance!
And now I have too people in this scene who I can’t understand
Let’s play poker for this suit
Are they having a protest outside Penny’s hotel room
Why did I try flirting with a protest sign?
Haha, I haven’t actually left
Instead I’m playing your piano
Lucky starts singing “The Way You Look Tonight”
He’s playing a piano but I can barely hear it
Ahh!!! I didn’t know you’d look like that!
Meanwhile, Ricardo watching Lucky & Penny dancing
Stop eyeing up my woman
Ricardo looks like Patrick McGuinness
Lucky says he hates Ricardo… just because
Are these two meant to be in a relationship (Lucky’s Dad and this woman)
Ricardo says he isn’t playing any music for Penny and Lucky’s dance
We find out that Ricardo lost his job gambling it the night before
Better gamble his contract back
They’re playing the same two songs over and over
Seeing over men dance with Penny makes Ricardo jealous
All my winnings vs Ricardo’s contract
Lucky’s won the contract
I’m still not playing for you! We’ll see about that
Time for more dancing
Who drives a convertable with the roof down in the snow
Lucky tells his Dad to keep a eye on him in case he falls in love with Penny as he’s meant to be getting married to someone else
His dad has just eaten the lucky quarter to stop Lucky from gambling
And I’m still half asleep
Watch my magical skills as I haven’t actually eaten the quarter
Let’s go visit the countryside in the snow
Stop getting cozy with me
I still can’t make out what Lucky’s Dad is saying
Must stay loyal! Must stay loyal!
Does her hat have horns on it?
If you’re cold – flap your arms
I’m barely paying attention to they’re conversation
Penny starts sing “A Fine Romance”
“You’re as cold as yesterday’s mashed potatoes”
I can sum up her song in one line – “JUST SHAG ME ALREADY!!!!”
That snowball made a dint his hat
SNOWBALL FIGHT!! No! Boo!
Did she compare a snowball to the face to being in the war
Lucky’s Dad has told Penny about Lucky’s fiance back home
Time for Lucky’s version of “A Fine Romance”
Back with Ricardo
He has a guitarist but I can’t hear him
Ricardo proposes to Penny but she refuses
Penny’s dress is very revealing
She’s now acting like a robot trying to kiss Lucky
They did a KISS ME BITCH and I didn’t get to see it
OH GOD IT’S BLACKFACE!!!!!
Why did we have to have the camera go between his legs?
At least he doesn’t have the oversized lips!
And I’m still half asleep
Lucky’s fiancee was watching from the crowd
Oh fuck off Lucky’s Dad!!!!!
He’s getting kicked out into Lucky’s dressing room
Time to bet for Ricardo’s contracts again
Lucky’s loses the contract
Penny finds out and meets Lucky’s fiancee
She and Ricardo have a moment together as Lucky looks on
They both apologise to each other
Lucky’s so sad that he is never gonna dance again
“Never Gonna Dance” plays
I may have said I’m never gonna dance but I want one last dance with you
This is a very long dance
Lucky visits his fiancee the next day to hear that she doesn’t want to marry him anymore
Lucky’s happy with this because he can fall in love with Penny
Lucky’s Dad and the woman who’s name I still don’t know join in on the laughter
Lucky’s Dad tells Lucky that Penny & Ricardo are getting married THIS AFTERNOON!!!
I can’t tell if she’s upset or laughing
“He isn’t seeing anyone” – Well I may as well see him anyway
Lucky uses the same trick his old work mates pulled on him
Lucky’s Dad has stolen Ricardo’s trousers meaning that the wedding’s off
Better borrow the butler’s trousers
Even Penny says that the wedding’s off and says she’s marrying Lucky
Can someone give Ricardo a belt for his trousers?
“A Fine Romance” and they both hug