Funny Face (1957)
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This filmed version of the 1927 George Gershwin Broadway musical Funny Face utilizes the play's original star, Fred Astaire, and several of the original tunes, then goes merrily off on its own. Astaire is cast as as fashion photographer Dick Avery (a character based on Richard Avedon, the film's "visual consultant"), who is sent out by his female boss Maggie Prescott (Kay Thompson) to find a "new face". It doesn't take Dick long to discover Jo (Audrey Hepburn, who does her own singing), an owlish Greenwich Village bookstore clerk. Acting as Pygmalion to Jo's Galatea, Dick whisks the wide-eyed girl off to Paris and transforms her into the fashion world's hottest model. Along the way, he falls in love with Jo, and works overtime to wean her away from such phony-baloney intellectuals as Professor Emile Flostre (Michel Auclair). The Gershwin tunes include the title song, "S'wonderful", "How Long Has This Been Going On" and "He Loves and She Loves"; among the newer numbers is Kay Thompson's energetic opener "Think Pink". For years available only in washed-out, flat prints, Funny Face was eventually restored to its full Technicolor and VistaVision glory. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi … More
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Critic Reviews for Funny Face
Sensation trumps cogitation-unsurprising in a Hollywood production-which doesn't negate the enduring allure of this beautiful bauble.
...can clunk like a tin can in the dryer. But hey, we're talking Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire, so that's some mighty elegant slack we're willing to cut here.
Funny Face...teams Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn in a delightfully balmy romance.
What is startling here is the eye-popping colour, the self-reflexive photography and visual effects, the dance sequences (Fred Astaire with his umbrella), and the witty and ingenious use of the Paris locations.
If you're prepared to do a bit of revisionist thinking, it all makes sense.
Astaire could still dance up a storm, no doubt about it, and this has its moments.
It's an intermittently charming trifle with directorial style to burn in the place of any kind of satisfactory substance.
A timeless musical treat and the most fun you can have with really elegant clothes on.
One of Hollywood's funniest, most stylish musicals, this breezy satire from 1957 thrives on the pairing of Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn.
...a sporadically engaging yet hopelessly erratic old-school musical.
Of her iconic films, Hepburn shines the most in Funny Face by focusing on what makes her beautiful.
Despite some memorable musical numbers, gorgeous sets and energy galore, there's something about Funny Face that wasn't working for me, and it wasn't just the absurd idea about Audrey Hepburn being a frumpy bore.
I didn't appreciate every song-and-dance sequence, yet I could hardly keep my eyes off the screen for all the showy merriment going on.
One of Stanley Donen's most stylish and enjoyable films, this musical is a triumph for Astaire's spectacular dancing, Audrey Hepburn's elegant appearance, and the Gershwins splendid score.
The Devil may wear Prada, but the rest of the fashion world wears pink, at least according to Stanley Donen's endearingly naive Funny Face.
At once more naturalistic and more stylized -- with Donen pushing Technicolor to the very limits of color saturation.
A film crucial to understanding Hepburn's glorious gamine appeal and one of Astaire's best musicals of the 1950s.
I could watch this classic over and over again
Audience Reviews for Funny Face
Funny Face is probably the ultimate modern musical. It's been a huge influence on the genre and has also influenced a couple of non-musicals. The bohemian Cinderella story maybe a bit shaky at times but the choreography, costumes, make-up, profs, locations and overall beautiful direction are second to none. That's before you get to the brilliant music numbers and the fantastic performances. Fred Astaire is on full charm offensive, at first the obvious age gap between he and Audrey Hepburn makes for uneasy viewing but this doesn't last thanks to her maturity and his childishness. Audrey Hepburn is drop dead beautiful, far from the 'Funny Face' she's supposed to be but when compared to the magazine model of the day, she did have something of a revolutionary style about her. Both are sublime and the dance numbers they have together are among the best committed to film. However, it is Kay Thompson as the pushy yet over the top Maggie Prescott who really steals the show and makes the film 'one of the best'. Her performance is hilarious and she keeps up effortlessly when it comes to the singing and dancing scenes too. Why she appeared in very few films after is a mystery and a tragedy. Funny Face was so cutting edge for its time, I'm not sure why it isn't mentioned more when people talk of shifts in style and analyse decades in film. Funny Face has everything a great film needs and is in my opinion one of the quintessential films of the 1950's.
I love Audrey Hepburn. I like Fred Astaire. I like director Stanley Donen. I love musicals. I hate "Funny Face." Watching "Funny Face" was like overdosing on sugar. You might be like, 'Steven? How can you hate "Funny Face" and like something like "High School Musical?"' Well, my answer is easy. With a movie like "High School Musical" the songs are helping tell the story and let you connect to the narrative and the characters. (Um, like ANY good musical) The songs in "Funny Face" have so little to do with the overall arc that when they happen (and they happen about every 5 minutes) the entire film has to stop. "Funny Face" seems like it runs 3 hours. Sure, Hepburn and Astaire are likable, like always, but they are really sticking to their wheelhouse here. There is nothing new and everything else is so schmaltzy that it renders the entire thing pat. "Funny Face" is just too silly, too tiresome and too meandering for me to actually enjoy.More
Audrey Hepburn can't sing for crap (dubbed) but that beatnik dance scene stays with you forever, and the chemistry between her and Astaire makes this a classic.More
Great dancing and some iconic songs but not the highlight of either of the two lead's careers. Full review later.More
Funny Face Quotes
- Dick Avery:
- You are mad, aren't you?
- Jo Stockton:
- No, I'm not mad. I'm hurt, and disappointed, and... and mad.
- Jo Stockton:
- I have no desire to be kissed.
- Jo Stockton:
- Take the picture, take the picture!
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