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Scott Ventura >> Movie Commentary >> November 1998 >> Singin' in the Rain

Singin' in the Rain

Movie Commentary by Scott Ventura


Scott's Rating:
5 / 5
Times Seen:
Viewing Dates on Record:
November 1998, June 2003
IMDB Name:
Singin' in the Rain (1952)
Stanley Donen
Gene Kelly
musical, romance
MPAA Rating:

Physical Talent

In thinking about this classic movie, I'm struck by the limits of the physical challenges that current- day movie stars endure. I love Jackie Chan just as much as the next guy, and I thought the kung fu in The Matrix was spectacular, but the physicality there serves only violence. When you take a trip back to the days of musicals, when singing and dancing meant something, you're in for a totally different experience. Gene Kelly, Donald O'Connor, and Debbie Reynolds can dazzle with their acrobatics, too, but they dance to celebrate life. This may seem hokey now, but it's liberating to see a movie that's not only infectiously happy, but also guiltlessly exhilerating for its action. Just try watching O'Connor doing "Make 'Em Laugh" without breaking a smile. Try staying sad as Kelly splashes his way down the street. I can't believe that it would be possible.

Little Things

I had the pleasure of watching Singin' in the Rain on CAV laserdisc, which provides the highest quality possible for every frame. I individually stepped through the frames when Reynolds hurls the cake at Kelly trying to see Kelly react quicker than he should've. Not only did he not move early, but there is a single frame of perfect shock on his face before he starts his dodge. That one frame is almost certainly over too quickly to be perceived consciously, but finding it there was quite a thrill.

Other Opinions

Copyright 1998-2003 by Scott Ventura. All rights reserved.