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Gigi (1958)

tomatometer

75

Average Rating: 7.2/10
Reviews Counted: 28
Fresh: 21 | Rotten: 7

It may not be one of Minnelli's best, but the charming and flawlessly acted Gigi still offers enough visual and musical treats to satisfy.

60

Average Rating: 5/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 2

It may not be one of Minnelli's best, but the charming and flawlessly acted Gigi still offers enough visual and musical treats to satisfy.

audience

76

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 20,662

My Rating

Movie Info

Leslie Caron plays Gigi, a young girl raised by two veteran Parisian courtesans (Hermione Gingold and Isabel Jeans) to be the mistress of wealthy young Gaston (Louis Jourdan). When Gaston falls in love with Gigi and asks her to be his wife, Jeans is appalled: never has anyone in their family ever stooped to anything so bourgeois as marriage! Weaving in and out of the story is Maurice Chevalier as an aging boulevardier who, years earlier, had been in love with Gingold's character. Chevalier gets

Apr 27, 1999

MGM Home Entertainment

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All Critics (28) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (21) | Rotten (7) | DVD (18)

The performances are well nigh faultless.

March 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Gigi is dressed to kill, but if all the French finery impresses the customers, it also smothers the story.

February 18, 2009 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's easy to drift away from the story and become absorbed in Minnelli's impossibly delicate textures, but there is a little something here for everybody.

December 13, 2006 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's like a meal consisting of cheesecake, and one quickly longs for something solid and vulgar to weigh things down.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A charming entertainment.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's a fine bittersweet air to this tale that leaves you longing to see it again.

February 25, 2014 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

Given the shortage of dancing and soaring vocal melodies...Minnelli must lean heavily on personality and a spectacle defined by the pageantry of historic locations, sets and costumes. [Blu-ray]

April 5, 2009 Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews
Groucho Reviews

The great Minnelli was surely one of the masters of the American musical, but Gigi was one of his misfires.

September 11, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

...one of Hollywood's most celebrated classics from an era when studios were still making meticulous, tune-filled musicals.

September 5, 2008 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Feminist musical, with Minnelli's taste and visual style, makes for an involving experience.

August 8, 2008 Full Review Source: Classic Film and Television
Classic Film and Television

How much one likes it, depends on how much French pastry one can eat during one sitting.

March 17, 2008 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Splendid MGM Lerner and Lowe musical classic in all areas: stars, music, and overall production.

February 17, 2008
Video-Reviewmaster.com

One of the last great musicals to be written especially for the screen.

January 28, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Overbaked but enjoyable, and a banquet for the eyes.

December 13, 2006 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

A gorgeous musical that lacks the nuance and emotion of other films in its genre.

November 15, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinema Sight
Cinema Sight

A quintessential Minnelli musical, a morally ambiguous, sophisticated tale of Parisian decadence, done in sumptuous MGM style, Gigi is the biggest commercial hit of Minnelli and Arthur Freed's lengthy collaboration.

July 17, 2006 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

In the hands of a master craftsman, even this otherwise iffy musical becomes lively, lovely entertainment.

February 23, 2005 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

A silly feel-good film, nothing that happens is in the least bit surprising.

November 26, 2002 Full Review Source: Zap2it.com
Zap2it.com

So artificial it threatens to collapse, but nice to look at

August 21, 2002
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

All charm and champagne, but a feminist nightmare.

August 1, 2002
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies

Audience Reviews for Gigi

I like the scene of Jourdan reconsidering at the fountain - done entirely in silhouette. It's a beautiful little dance.

I wonder what other movies might look like with Maurice Chevalier as the narrator. "Oh 'ello! Bonjour! Zis ees New York en 1970 et ziis ees my bon ami Travis!. Pauvre Travis..."
February 4, 2008
brooklynspo

Super Reviewer

Director Vincente Minnelli fills the screen with so much color and pageantry, the eyes can barely contain it all. There's a magnificence to the presentation that seems to have spared no expense in recreating the French fashions. Cecil Beaton's production design, costumes and scenery is the ultimate. It is sumptuous. There's such an old fashioned grandeur that relies so heavily on sets and wardrobe that it is kind of fascinating. Even for 1958, Gigi was a bit of a throwback to an earlier time. It was the last great MGM musical of Hollywood's golden age, although Minnelli would direct Bells are Ringing in 1960 and that's pretty wonderful too.

The cast is captivating. My favorites are Maurice Chevalier and Hermione Gingold. They are an absolute delight, particularly in their witty duet, ""I Remember It Well". Other song highlights are "Thank Heaven for Little Girls" and "Gigi". Leslie Caron is a spirited vision as the title character. No one conveys indignant exasperation like suave Louie Jourdan. The script is rather funny too. Isabel Jeans as the highly strung Aunt Alicia delivers some of the best lines with perfect timing and intonation during her tutelage. Classic lines abound. "A topaz? Among my jewels? Are you mad?" "Bad table manners, my dear Gigi, have broken up more households than infidelity." "Wait for the first-class jewels, Gigi. Hold on to your ideals." The social mores and customs are amusingly dated, but that's really the point now isn't it? Let's just say, they don't make 'em like this anymore.

fastfilmreviews.com
August 31, 2014
hobster1

Super Reviewer

Leonardo DiCaprio has never been awarded an Oscar... but somehow, this disaster won nine of them. What a vapid, pointless movie. The plot is "this young girl had best grow into the social graces of womanhood so that a rich, unattainable man will want to marry her." Then she does. The acting is hammy, even for a musical, and these bourgeois blowhards don't seem to work at anything. Paris and the French are stereotyped beyond belief, and if not for the occasionally witty lyrics - which the film can hardly be credited for, as this was adapted from the stage - there is nothing redeeming about this relic. It was a different time, sure, but this film beat out Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and the much more provocative and entertaining The Defiant Ones... plus, Spencer Tracy starred in The Old Man and the Sea... which wasn't even nominated! I know, I know; greatness is not defined by the Academy Awards. But the idea that this film gets to stand beside The Deer Hunter, The Best Years of Our Lives, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Casablanca, Unforgiven, Kramer vs. Kramer, (or even Forrest Gump or Rocky!), absolutely turns my stomach. I was hoping this was a satire and that I was the only one not in the joke... but even if it was intended to be, no one would get that from it. For women, it implies, your worth is determined by whether you can properly pour coffee, or pick out a good cigar for a man, or know which jewels are the really good ones (so you can criticize the gifts you or other women get... from men, naturally). I'm pretty sure this film is the entire reason the Bechdel test came into existence. Simply atrocious... and two. full. hours. It's time you'll never get back. Worst. Best. Picture. Ever. Hands down.
December 15, 2013
danperry17

Super Reviewer

A young woman enters maturity and falls for a family friend.
Home of the child molester's anthem, "Thank Heaven for Little Girls," Gigi is a superbly decorated, pastel-hued showcase of art direction and set design. The only problem is that they forgot the story. What suffices as a plot is merely the cliche of male pursuit with little in the way of commentary on social graces or sexual politics, and the characters are types, conforming to the cliche in every way imaginable.
Overall, pretty backgrounds do not make a good film by themselves.
October 13, 2013
hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

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