Stars & Stripes Forever [Blu-ray + DVD]
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Top Customer Reviews
One film that fell into this category but not quite was STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER. While featuring some great music, it wasn't the song and dance style seen in most films. Instead this movie was a biographical picture about the life and times of composer John Phillips Sousa, a man whose marches everyone had heard even if they don't recognize the name. Sure you hear it mention every Fourth of July but would you really know the name otherwise?
The film doesn't go back to his birth but to the birth of his music. It opens with Sousa about to retire from the Marines in the hope of beginning his own band in order to make more money. As played by Clifton Webb, Sousa seems pretty stiff but we soon see him open up and become more accessible. Between trying to sing a ballad for his wife he's written hoping to steer clear of marches, she knows he can't sing well and speeds it up showing how this song will be a march as well.
He also opens up when a young protégé named Willie Little (Robert Wagner) invites him to hear his songs played in public. What he doesn't tell Sousa is that it's at a music hall where the crowd is more interested in hearing and seeing the dancing girls. Once he sees the girl Little has brought him to see he stays as well. She later performs a number for Sousa and his wife in their home and while he offers her criticism he takes her on to learn more about performing.Read more ›
There are several Sousa marches in the film, along with one non-Sousa number, "Springtime In New York," which gives Debra Paget a chance to show off her considerable singing and dancing talents.
Bonus features, aside from the usual Spanish and English audio tracks, and Spanish, English, and French subtitles, include a brief history of 20th Century-Fox musicals, leading up to STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER; a mini-documentary about Sousa's musical contributions; original U.S. and U.K. trailers, and the alternate U.K. title sequence, where the film was issued, for unknown reasons, under the title Marching Along, the Sousa autobiography on which the film was based. In addition, there are also galleries of press clippings, promotional materials from the film, and still photos. The packaging is somewhat misleading; the bonus features are listed as being exclusive to the Blu-ray disc, but are on the DVD as well. The DVD has the film in Standard Definition; the Blu-ray in High Definition.
An excellent five-star movie.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had this movie on VHS for years and was pleasantly surprised to find it's not only on disc, but Blu-ray! Read morePublished 4 days ago by Henry Frankenberg
Story based on John Phillip Soosa's life as a band director - I am a former Marine.Published 26 days ago by C.S. VANCIL
High quality DVD; as usual with Hollywood, some dramatic liberties were taking with the accuracy of content but still overall a very entertaining and enjoyable moviePublished 27 days ago by Craig B.
Most enjoyable movie in my DVD collection. I'm so glad you had it in stock.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
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