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You're the Top: The Cole Porter Story
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From the Back Cover
Hosted and narrated by renowned entertainer and Cole Porter devotee Bobby Short, You're the Top: The Cole Porter Story probes the many facets of Porter's persona. One of the most skillful composers ever, Porter created such Broadway and Hollywood hits as Kiss Me Kate, Anything Goes, Silk Stockings and Can Can. His wit and sophisticated style are still the standards to which today's composers and lyricists aspire. The documentary is an informative and lively celebration of the man who embraced an elite lifestyle and chronicled the world of high society with his music. Highlights include performances of Porter's songs by Fred Astaire, Ethel Merman, Frank Sinatra, Shirley MacLaine, Maurice Chevalier, Gertrude Lawrence, Judy Garland and Bing Crosby, as well as rare photographs and archival footage.
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Cole Porter was arguably the greatest of all the composers of American Standards, for reasons explained in "You're the Top". And to explain this, as well as to outline one of the most colorful celebrity lives of the 20th century, are people who actually knew Porter, knew him socially, worked with him and performed his music - people like Bobby Short, Kitty Carlisle (Mrs. Moss Hart), Brendan Gill, Linda Ronstadt, Harry Connick, Jr., Porter's family from his childhood, etc. Especially insightful are the observations of Porter's childhood and his marriage. They go far in explaining both the people and the era that nurtured his talent and later provided the milieu from which he drew his "delightful, de-lovely" themes.
No punches are pulled, nothing glossed over for the sake of image or box-office receipts. And of course the Porter music, complimenting the narrative, is a chronicle itself, for it captures the zeitgeist brilliantly, performed by the headliners of the times, from early sound to TV's Golden Age, when the audience was more up to Porter's level of elegance, style and wit than today's dressed-down, dumbed-down generation.
I suggest that if you have seen or are going to see either of the bio-flicks, that you treat yourself to this "wonderful, marvelous" look at a life and its era - alas, as intimate a look as we'll ever get. They truly broke the mold...