A burlesque dancer, (Lucille Ball) competes with a ballerina (Maureen O’Hara) for a divorced playboy (Louis Hayward).
This is yet again one of those films which can either be loved or hated. In the same way, if it wasn’t on BBCi Player I don’t think I’d choose to watch films like this as they’re not my sort of thing. All too often they can be watched and then forgotten about, which is a pity but just how it is.
I think this film was just of its time, and as such its ultimately unsatisfying. It is far too tempting to judge it with 21st century viewpoints, but I can’t help it. However, the friendship between the two women is done well at the same time despite any failings the film has.
I don’t tend to take these sorts of films seriously and as such it ensures distance between me as a viewer and the film itself. Apparently this film received feminist attention in the 1970s and I can see why but at the same time it is just like so many other similar films of its kind. Similarly, I don’t want to recourse to looking at films critically because I’ve had enough of that through doing it constantly in my three years of undergraduate study.
The romances are boring and predictable, and yet there still has to be a romantic union or something similar at the end of the film.
However, the fact that it is a woman’s film, directed by a woman, in 1940 is certainly something remarkable. Everything else is just a bit dull.
MY RATING: **.5 / *****