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Shall We Dance (1937)

4.6 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Shall We Dance (DVD)

A ballet dancer and a showgirl fake their marriage for publicity purposes before falling in love for real in this delightful musical comedy starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in their seventh film together. Numerous mistaken-identity gags ensue. Among the well-known songs in George and Ira Gershwin's score are "Slap That Bass," "They Can't Take That Away From Me," "They All Laughed," and "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off," which features Fred and Ginger in a showstopper on roller skates. The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Song.

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Special Features

Audio Commentary: Commentary by Kevin Cole and Hugh Martin Featurette: They Can't Take That Away from Me: The Music of Shall We Dance Other: Musical Short Sheik to Sheik and Classic Cartoon Toy Town HallAudio Commentary: Commentary by Kevin Cole and Hugh Martin Featurette: They Can't Take That Away from Me: The Music of Shall We Dance Other: Musical Short Sheik to Sheik and Classic Cartoon Toy Town HallAudio Commentary: Commentary by Kevin Cole and Hugh Martin Featurette: They Can't Take That Away from Me: The Music of Shall We Dance Other: Musical Short Sheik to Sheik and Classic Cartoon Toy Town Hall

Product Details

  • Actors: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore, Jerome Cowan
  • Directors: Friz Freleng, Mark Sandrich
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, NTSC, Original recording remastered, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Turner Home Ent
  • DVD Release Date: August 16, 2005
  • Run Time: 109 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009NSCQC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,676 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Shall We Dance (1937)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Bobby Underwood VINE VOICE on September 3, 2005
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
The beloved "Shall We Dance" was the only Fred and Ginger film with songs from George and Ira Gershwin, and they were splendid. Songs like "They Can't Take That Away From Me" made for great entertainment when coupled with the opulent RKO sets in this Pandro S. Berman production. The lively tale of mix-ups and misunderstandings was from a screenplay by Allan Scott and Ernest Pagno, based on an adaptation by P.J. Wolfson of a story by Lee Loeb and Harold Buchman. Ginger's gowns by Irene were fabulous as always and Mark Sandrich once again took the helm.

On his stay in Paris, Pete (Fred Astaire), a famous ballet dancer also known as Petrov, wants to meet musical comedy star Linda Keene (Ginger Rogers), and in fact, would like to marry her! Pete and his pal Jeffrey (Edward Everett Horton) discover she's sailing on the S.S. Queen Anne and follow her. Pete uses a fake accent for a short time but is eventually found out, and finds out that dogs are the way to a girl's heart.

A wild story Jeffery told Lady Tarrington (Ketti Gallian) in Paris comes back to haunt Pete, as suddenly everyone on the cruise thinks he and Linda have been secretly married, and are going to have a baby! It's a bit much for Linda, who has sworn off reporters, and they decide to really get married, so they can get divorced. But it's too late for Linda, as she has fallen in love with the pursuing Pete, and there is a sadness as Pete sings "They Can't Take That Away From Me" on a ferry to Manhattan after it's all done. The tune was nominated as Best Song but lost the Oscar to "Sweet Leilani" from "Waikiki Wedding.
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Format: VHS Tape
While not in the same league as 'Swing Time' or 'Top Hat', which are the duo's best musicals. This one still holds surprisingly well and is among their best. It was directed by Mark Sandrich, who also directed 'Top Hat'. The plot is almost as twisting, and the musical numbers are just as good. Astaire & Rogers were at their peak and seem more assured and more mature acting-wise. Ginger Rogers, in my opinion, is one of the cutest actresses of the silver screen. I've always been fascinated by her looks and in this particular film she seems the cutest, maybe because she was a bit older and a lot skinnier. But she's not only looks, she is the only one who can match Astaire in the dance floor. This is not an easy thing but she can do 'everything Astaire does backwards and in heels'. Astaire is also at his most charming and at the height of his dancing abilities. They also took two of the funniest supporting players of the Astaire & Rogers films; Edward Everett Horton and Eric Blore. They have some very funny scenes but they're not as charming as their previous films maybe because they are a tad over-used. But still the music and dancing are the highlights. The skating number 'Let's Call The Whole Thing Off' is priceless. And Astaire's rendition of the Oscar nominated 'Let's Call The Whole Thing Off' is also memorable, this song would later be sung by Sinatra in a more upbeat way. And the last title song dance number is great. If you're looking for 30's Hollywood musical escapism, then look no further and put yourself in the hands of two of the most effortlessly charming musical performers that ever lived. From a scale of 1-10 I give this film a 7!
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Format: VHS Tape
There's a special place in my heart for the films of Astaire & Rogers, and I think most people feel that way too about them. There was an innocence to their films. There was charm, wit, wonderful music (from the likes of Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, or, as in this movie George & Ira, and don't you dare ask George & Ira WHO?!)and there were great dance numbers. There was all of this and more. The chemistry between these two was unbelieveable. They played off each other so well. And their films clearly show this, watch any of them to find out.
"Shall We Dance" was directed by Mark Sandrich, the team's most trusted director, he directed 5 films with them ("Top Hat", "Carefree", & "Follow the Fleet" to name a few). And this film is just as good as any other film with Fred & Ginger. The plot in this one could border line on screwball comedy, and I suppose that's what makes it all the more enjoyable, we don't see movies like this anymore. "Shall We Dance" is about a great American dancer, Pete Peters (Fred Astaire) who happens to fall under the charms of Linda Keene (Ginger Rogers) when Peters finds out that Keene is going abroad, he gets a wonderful idea, perhaps he should go abroad too! But wait, more is added to this, Peters, pretends to be a famous Russian ballet dancer, the Great Petrov. Which of course means nothing to Linda. Then the usual "mistaking idenity" bit is played, but, it works.
As I stated before, all the Astaire & Rogers films offer great music, and the score by George & Ira could be one of the best score's Fred & Ginger ever sang and danced too.
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