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Hollywood Revue Of 1929

4.3 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Everybody sing. Everybody dance. Or, failing that, everybody step in place during the famed Singin' in the Rain finale. A torrent of talent takes the screen in the first all-star Talkie Era showcase of heretofore silent-screen players. Much of The Hollywood Revue of 1929 was filmed in the graveyard shift so that the stars' daytime shooting schedules would not be disrupted. Fans in Los Angeles and New York City were treated to movie marquees that included live showgirls. Once in the theater, they were treated to the on-screen delights of Joan Crawford singing and Charlestoning, Laurel and Hardy clowning, Norma Shearer and John Gilbert spoofing the Bard (in color!), Buster Keaton stonefacing and much more in a historic menagerie of fun.

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Product Details

  • Actors: Conrad Nagel, Jack Benny, John Gilbert, Marion Davies, Norma Shearer
  • Directors: Charles F. Reisner
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: MGM
  • DVD Release Date: February 16, 2006
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003NNGBLS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #28,412 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By calvinnme HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on December 20, 2009
Format: DVD
Every major studio did an all-talking revue in the years 1929 and 1930. However, MGM was the first with their "Hollywood Revue of 1929". The purpose of this film was to prove that the studio had the talent to succeed in talking pictures with their stable of stars. Since MGM marketed their stars as their chief assets more than any other studio, this revue came off the best, and it made lots of money at the box office, prompting a stampede by the other studios to produce similar films.

This film has no plot. It is simply a variety show put on by the MGM stars of 1929. You'll see many that you recognize, such as emcee Jack Benny, and some that you've probably never heard of unless you're a fan of 20's and early 30's films, such as Charles King and Karl Dane. Many interesting things go on such as Ann Dvorak slapping Jack Benny, William Haines eating Jack Benny's suit, Laurel and Hardy in a magic act, Joan Crawford being introduced for a dance number as the "personification of youth and beauty and joy and happiness", and Buster Keaton dressed in drag and doing an exotic dance. However, the middle section sags dreadfully and gives us some hint of what killed vaudeville with an adagio troupe act that seems to go on forever. Lon Chaney has a number dedicated to him, but he does not appear. Cliff Edwards and the Brox Sisters perform "Singin in the Rain" and then the whole cast assembles at the end of the film to reprise the song with Noah's Ark behind them - a probable dig at Jack Warner by Louis B. for the Warner film by the same name. The camera pans over each star slowly, emphasizing what is important to this studio at this time - its star power.

I've rated this film 5/5, but you must remember that I find this film impossible to rate in a general sense.
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Format: DVD
Except for a laser disc that came out about 18 years ago, "The Hollywood Revue of 1929" has never been issued before on any format until now. This is a wonderful and entertaining collection of singing and dancing which showcases MGM's most talented stable of stars, circa the '20s. This is the very first "talkie" that MGM made, hoping to hook in viewers to this "new" medium. There's even a singing and dancing extravaganza at the end with all of the stars in the movie that was filmed in color. Some of the performers in this colorful classic include: John Gilbert, Buster Keaton, Joan Crawford, Jack Benny, Laurel and Hardy and Lionel Barrymore. This is a DVD-R (that will play in your blu-ray player) that does not include any special features and does not come sealed. If you enjoy classic movies then you must watch the movie that started it all.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The Hollywood Revue of 1929(released Nov/29)stars,among others,Conrad Nagel,Jack Benny,Joan Crawford,Marion Davies,Anita Page,Marie Dressler,William Haines and Buster Keaton.This is MGM's effort at an all talking,singing and dancing film,with a bevy of its star roster on tap for the entertainment.As entertainment goes,it has its moments,but alas it doesn't hold its lustre very well after all these years.Yes,it is historically significant and we should be grateful it still is in existence,but given the year and that Hollywood's sound era was just dawning,it is a stop and start juggernaut.
There are a few shining spots amongst the chaff.Cliff Edwards(Ukelele Ike)does what he does best and was sensationally talented,Joan Crawford could really sing,Marie Dressler shines in her turns(looking much healthier than she would just three short years later),Laurel and Hardy are on tap for a really funny magical act,where Stan gives Ollie the spotlight,Buster Keaton does an underwater dance for Poseidon and does a head fall and recovery that has to be seen to be believed,Jack Benny and Conrad Nagel are both good hosts,and John Gilbert and Norma Shearer are on hand in a technicolour sequence of Romeo and Juliet(disproving for all time the canard that Gilbert's voice was unsuitable for sound).In between all this are the singing and dancing numbers ad nauseum.The worst performer by far was Marion Davies who couldn't sing if her life depended on it,and her dancing was not much better.But it was hubby Hearst who was funding this picture so of course she was in no matter what.This film was shot at night to avoid scheduling problems.
The problem with this particular release,unfortunately,has to do with two things A) The aspect ratio.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Excellent film that details the star of U.S. varieties, a film pioneer in sound, color and variety of stars. In particular it is a curiosity for film buffs. The biggest stars of the Metro had the opportunity to get their feet wet! I loved Mary Dressler, Buster Keaton, Joan Crawford, Norma Shearer, John Gilbert .. the end of "Singing in the Rain" is extraordinary and reflects the era in which it was produced .. great!
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Info from IMDB: "Some sources list the original running time of "Hollywood Revue of 1929" as 130 minutes. At least two sequences in the original roadshow version are missing from current prints: an opening recitation by the showgirls who are seen posing in the "Hollywood Revue" sign after the opening credits, and the appearance of Nils Asther, who assisted Jack Benny in introducing the final "Orange Blossom" number.2"

This Version has a lenght of 116 min and its very entertaining. It's not a movie with a story. Its a revue show with 25 stars from silent movie era like: William Haines, Marie Dressler (her "I'm the Queen" its very entertaining), Ukelele Ike, Jack Benny (his first on screen appearance), Anita Page, Joan Crawford, and any more, including a chorus girl named Carla Laemmle (who had the first speaking words in a fantasy/horror movie: "Dracula" in 1931 and who's still living and making at age of 101 a new movie "The Extra"), Buster Keaton, Polly Moran

ACT I
- The Palace of Minstrel sung and danced by a minstrel chorus
- Masters of Ceremonies Jack Benny introduces Conrad Nagel. Cliff Edwards interferes.
- Got a Feeling for You sung by Joan Crawford
- "Old Folks at Home" sung by chorus
- Old Black Joe sung by chorus
- Low-Down Rhythm sung and danced by June Purcell
- Your Mother and Mine sung by Charles King
- You Were Meant for Me "sung" by Conrad Nagel (whose voice was dubbed by Charles King) to Anita Page
- Nobody but You sung by Cliff Edwards
- Your Mother and Mine played by Jack Benny on his violin with interjections from Karl Dane and George K.
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