Wednesday, November 21, 2012
This was Dietrich’s first Hollywood film and it shows. She wasn't fluent in English at this point and spoke all of her lines phonetically, very much like Bela Lugosi in "Dracula". She also sings and let me just say that I resisted to the urge to skip the scene. I thought it was terrible and while I've never thought much of her singing ability but she's done better. This only managed to detract from the cabaret scene which is one of the more interesting parts of the film. In it, Dietrich dresses up in a tux, much to the chagrin of the cabaret owner. She walks out on stage and is immediately booed. I liked how she calmly waited for the audience and watched as Cooper shouted them down. What follows is a gender role reversal where Dietrich is the one in the suit, serenading the man. At one point she walks up to a woman, takes a flower from her and then kisses her. Censors originally wanted this cut from the film as they deemed it inappropriate. Dietrich was cleverly able to argue that continuity would be ruined as following this, she tosses Cooper the flower which he tucks behind his ear. The audience wouldn't know where the flower had come from if they cut out the kiss. It's important to note that this film was made in the Pre-Code Hollywood era. It's more than likely that the Hays Code would have cut that scene had the movie been made after 1934.
”High Noon” a movie for which he won Best Actor at the Academy Awards. Here his stoic acting style lends itself to the material