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Great Waltz
     

The Great Waltz

4.5 2
Director: Julien Duvivier, Luise Rainer, Fernand Gravey, Milza Korjus

Cast: Julien Duvivier, Luise Rainer, Fernand Gravey, Milza Korjus

 

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The Great Waltz was the first of two films bearing the same title which told the life story of Austrian "Waltz King" Johann Strauss. European singing sensation Fernard Gravet stars as Strauss, while MGM's two-time Oscar winner Luise Rainer is top-billed as Poldi Vogelhuber. Poldi is the wife of Strauss, but she is forced to sit and sulk as her husband carries

Overview

The Great Waltz was the first of two films bearing the same title which told the life story of Austrian "Waltz King" Johann Strauss. European singing sensation Fernard Gravet stars as Strauss, while MGM's two-time Oscar winner Luise Rainer is top-billed as Poldi Vogelhuber. Poldi is the wife of Strauss, but she is forced to sit and sulk as her husband carries on a lengthy affair with opera singer Milza Korjus (in her only American film). Husband and wife mend their differences shortly before being introduced to the court of Emperor Franz Josef. The scene everyone remembers is the one in which Gravet and Korjus improvise "The Tales of the Vienna Woods" while taking a buggy ride in the country. It's as corny as all get out, but never fails to earn applause when seen today. Dmitri Tiomkin was given the unenviable task of adapting the original Strauss tunes to conform with the concept of the film, while an uncredited Josef Von Sternberg assisted official director Julien Duvuvier in several crucial scenes. The 1972 The Great Waltz, which starred Horst Buchholtz, is generally conceded to be a disaster.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Schmaltzy and at times silly it may be, but The Great Waltz is still fine entertainment. The culprit, as is so often the case, especially with biopics, is the screenplay. The life of Strauss it envisions is fanciful, created really only so that there would be an excuse for showing off the composer's gorgeous, swirling music. Thus, Waltz tends to mark time in between numbers, which would be a serious liability were it not for the engaging performances of its trio of stars. As Strauss, Fernand Gravet turns in a good, solid performance and demonstrates a very decent singing voice. Luise Rainer uses her considerable dramatic talent to good effect in a part that could have easily been walked through, and Milza Korjus portrays Rainer's rival with flair and a wonderful vocal prowess. There's also fine comedic support from Hugh Herbert and the other players in general are a plus. Julien Duvivier directs with the intention of giving the eye its money's worth, and he takes full advantage of the gorgeous sets and costumes, as well as of Joseph Ruttenberg's lively yet dreamy camerawork. It's all as corny as can be, but it's hard to resist.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/08/2012
UPC:
0883316399828
Original Release:
1938
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Archives
Region Code:
0
Presentation:
[Full Frame]
Time:
1:44:00
Sales rank:
12,878

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Luise Rainer Poldi Vogelhuber
Fernand Gravey Johann Strauss
Milza Korjus Carla Donner
Hugh Herbert Hofbauer
Lionel Atwill Count Hohenfried
Curt Bois Kienzl
Leonid Kinskey Dudelman
Al Shean Cellist
Minna Gombell Mrs. Hofbauer
George Houston Schiller
Bert Roach Vogelhuber
Greta Meyer Mrs. Vogelhuber
Herman Bing Dommayer
Alma Kruger Mrs. Strauss
Henry Hull Emperor Franz Joseph
Sig Rumann Wertheimer
Christian Rub Coachman

Technical Credits
Julien Duvivier Director
Cedric Gibbons Art Director
Arthur Guttman Musical Direction/Supervision
Oscar Hammerstein Songwriter
Tom Held Editor
Samuel Hoffenstein Screenwriter
Bernard Hyman Producer
Albertina Rasch Choreography
Gottfried Reinhardt Original Story
Walter Reisch Screenwriter
Joseph Ruttenberg Cinematographer
Dimitri Tiomkin Score Composer

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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The Great Waltz 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
YMSD More than 1 year ago
For lovers of old movies, specially those with the great voices of the 1930's & 40's, this is a must.
jjb21010 More than 1 year ago
fernand gravet's acting, he doesn't even play a violin! he should have won an accademy award. miliza kordus's beatiful opra voice. what a chance she took to sing a waltz. she also should have won the best supporting actress. breath taking scenery, on location. the music was fantastic. everyone should see this great film if only i was born 30 years eailier! i watch this movie daily & am looking forward to seeing all of mr. gravet's movies.