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The best musical movie ever made! With the best movie song ever sung: The Carioca!
What a wild hodgepodge of a movie this is. Forget the plot, which is labored as it trundles along trying to get us from one 'wow' moment to the next. The direction, pace, and editing are all quite clumsy, and the film is a bit of a mess. On the other hand, there are many great moments, you get to see Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in their first screen pairing, the beautiful Dolores del Rio, and quite a bit of pre-code naughtiness spicing it all up. It makes for quite a bit of entertainment if you just roll with it.
Fred Astaire dances and sings well of course, but he also does a great job as the supporting actor, making faces and comments about the leading man's (Gene Raymond) love interests. He's just brilliant. When he and Rogers dance the Carioca after watching the Brazilians doing it, you can feel the magic. It came after a pretty hilarious exchange too. The moves from the Brazilian dancers were steamy, and as their heads touched, the passion in their eyes was evident, leading to this:
Fred: "So that's the Carioca."
Ginger: "What's this business with the foreheads?"
Fred: "Mental Telepathy."
Ginger: "I can tell what they're thinking about from here."
Earlier Ginger sings with subtle overtones that "music makes me do the things I never should do." How fantastic is it to see not only the first of Fred and Ginger's ten movies together, but the only one made before the dreaded production code. Another clever risqué line in the film was "What have those girls got below the equator that we haven't?", which is slipped in there instead of "What have those girls below the equator got that we haven't?"
Dolores del Rio is a bit upstaged here, despite getting the leading credit, but is fantastic as well. The scene where her and Raymond's 'inner thoughts' step outside their bodies as ghosts and advise them to follow their passionate impulses is cute. Later he puts her over his knee and spanks her for an odd reason, adding to the film's oddities. She is elegant and gorgeous in the outfits she wears in the film, including a bathing suit briefly.
The film has some nice stock footage of the streets of Rio de Janeiro and surrounding hills, sometimes from the air. The songs performed, including Alice Gentle, Movita Castaneda and Etta Moten singing 'Carioca', are fantastic. The energy and passion in the dance performances are excellent, but many of the visual effects don't live up to their potential, or to better examples. They're nowhere near the quality of Busby Berkeley productions, so it's not clear to me why his name is mentioned as often as it is in reviews of this film. It is wild and a riot though, particularly when numbers are performed on the tops of planes, including many women in see-through tops. Does it make sense that they're up there, far from where anyone can even see them? Or that one falls from one plane, only to miraculously land on another's wing? Or that they're scantily clad to begin with? Of course not. It fits nothing logically and yet somehow seems to fit this over-the-top film. It's really too bad it wasn't in the hands of a better director, but as it is, there is plenty to keep you entertained.
Flying Down to Rio is an amazing film. It is about an aviator and a band leader who is always getting his group fired for his flirtatious behavior with the female guests. Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers give excellent performances. The screenplay is good but a little slow in places. Thomas Freeland did a great job directing this movie. I enjoyed watching this motion picture because of the music and romance. Flying Down to Rio is a must see.
Not the best Astaire/Rodgers film as they play side-characters to Dolores del Río and Gene Raymond but it has a bunch of fun dance sequences including the famous airplane dance sequence.
Saw this with Robert osbourne introducing it at the national portrait gallery. A fun and go lucky musical with some good tunes and dancing.
I am so glad you came along.
Roger Bond is a lady's man that flies planes and performs in a band...making it pretty easy to score chicks. However, in a trip to Rio he falls for Belinha, a socialite and bride to be. Roger is best friends with the groom, but that will change based on his new love. Roger will do his best to win Belinha while she does her best to avoid him.
"Every time I think of her I want to bite myself."
Thornton Freeland, director of Whopee, They Call it Sin, Dark Sands, The Secret Witness, The Unexpected Father, Over the Moon, and Brass Monkey, delivers Flying Down to Rio. The storyline for this is just okay and a bit predictable. The acting is very good and the cast delivers entertaining performances. The cast includes Gene Raymond, Dolores del Rio, Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, and Roy D'Arcy.
"Is there any special way you like your coconut juice?"
This was recently on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) during a Ginger Rogers/Fred Astaire marathon. I DVR'd this it was their first movie together. I found it above average and entertaining but far from a classic. This contains entertaining characters worth following but is only worth watching once and I wouldn't purchase the DVD.
"In me you see a sinner."
Fred & Ginger were adorable background characters. I now see why they were paired together for so many other movies.
It's worth to see an Astaire-Rogers movie where they're not the main couple just to see that scene where Fred speaks portuguese to the brazilian guards haha
An incredibly underwhelming film that launched to the world that Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers have arrived & they are the 'IT Thing'
The film itself cast Fred & Ginger as supporting roles but it became clear in filming these two are the real stars & the film ended with these two not the leads.
But the film is dull, labored & very unexciting, even for fans it's a tough watch with achingly bad leads the only redemptive qualities are the great numbers by Fred & Ginger.
The first on-screen pairing of Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers is weighed down a bit by a silly love triangle plot; song highlights include "Orchids in the Moonlight," the giddy "Flying Down to Rio," and the Oscar-nominated "Carioca."