Review: Swing Time (1936)

Every Thursday night I host a classic film series where I play Robert Osbourne for the evening and talk about the greatest movies ever made. This week’s film was Swing Time.

Swing Time is perhaps the finest of all the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers collaborations. It is the story of Lucky,a vaudeville performer, played by Astaire, who is tricked into missing his wedding and in order to marry his fiancee he must make $25, 000. To earn the money, he ventures off to New York. Here he meets, Penny, a dance instuctor, played by Ginger Rogers. Lucky and Penny end up as dance partners and love interests. But of course their happiness together never really begins because both of their fiances come back to haunt them.

Swing Time is a fun dance musical (much more dance than musical) that really shares the talents of Astaire and Rogers. It combines witty humor and lovely songs to create a wonderful movie. (The song, “The Way You Look Tonight” won an Oscar in 1937 for Best Song and is ranked #43 on AFI’s Greatest Songs List.)

Take it from someone who never truly enjoys musicals, any opportunity to watch the two of them dance is worth it. Sometimes, I’ll even fastfoward through the dialogue just to watch them dance. It is as though you are swept out onto the dance floor with them.

Updated October 6, 2010

AFI Top 100 #50-1

Here is the second half of the AFI list…. you’ll notice that more films are ighly recommended as it gets closer to number 1


50.BUTCH CASSIDY & THE SUNDANCE KID (1969)
49.SNOW WHITE & THE SEVEN DWARFS (1937)
48.JAWS (1975)
47.TAXI DRIVER (1976)
46.CLOCKWORK ORANGE, A (1971)
45.STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, A (1951)

44.BIRTH OF A NATION, THE (1915)
43.KING KONG (1933)
42.REAR WINDOW (1954)
41.WEST SIDE STORY (1961)
40.NORTH BY NORTHWEST (1959)
39.DOCTOR ZHIVAGO (1965)
38.DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944)
37.BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES, THE (1946)

36.MIDNIGHT COWBOY (1969)
35.IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT (1934)
34.TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD (1962)
33.HIGH NOON (1952)

32.GODFATHER PART II, THE (1974)
31.ANNIE HALL (1977)
30.TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE (1948)
29.MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON (1939)
28.APOCALYPSE NOW (1979)
27.BONNIE & CLYDE (1967)
26.DR. STRANGELOVE (1964)

25.E.T. THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL (1982)
24.RAGING BULL (1980)
23.MALTESE FALCON, THE (1941)
22.2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (1968)
21.GRAPES OF WRATH, THE (1940)
20.ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST (1975)
19.CHINATOWN (1974)
18.PSYCHO (1960)
17.AFRICAN QUEEN, THE (1951)
16.ALL ABOUT EVE (1950)
15.STAR WARS (1977)
14.SOME LIKE IT HOT (1959)

13.BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI, THE (1957)
12.SUNSET BOULEVARD (1950)
11.IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946)
10.SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN (1952)
9.SCHINDLER’S LIST (1993)
8.ON THE WATERFRONT (1954)
7.GRADUATE, THE (1967)
6.WIZARD OF OZ, THE (1939)
5.LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962)
4.GONE WITH THE WIND (1939)
3.GODFATHER, THE (1972)
2.CASABLANCA (1942)
1.CITIZEN KANE (1941)

AFI Top 100 #100-51

Here are the movies on the AFI Top 100 List and my recommendations:
bold and italicized = highly recommended
bold = recommended
anything else means don’t bother, it won’t impact life

100. YANKEE DOODLE DANDY (1942)
99.GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER (1967)
98.UNFORGIVEN (1992)
97.BRINGING UP BABY (1938)
96.SEARCHERS, THE (1956)
95.PULP FICTION (1994)
94.GOODFELLAS (1990)
93.APARTMENT, THE (1960)
92.PLACE IN THE SUN, A(1951)
91.MY FAIR LADY (1964)
90.JAZZ SINGER, THE (1927)
89.PATTON (1970)
88.EASY RIDER (1969)
87.FRANKENSTEIN (1931)
86.MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY (1935)
85.DUCK SOUP (1933)
84.FARGO (1996)
83.PLATOON (1986)
82.GIANT (1956)
81.MODERN TIMES (1936)

80.WILD BUNCH, THE (1969)
79.DEER HUNTER, THE (1978)
78.ROCKY (1976)
77.AMERICAN GRAFFITI (1973)
76.CITY LIGHTS (1931)
75.DANCES WITH WOLVES (1990)
74.GOLD RUSH, THE (1925)
73.WUTHERING HEIGHTS (1939)
72.BEN-HUR (1959)
71.FORREST GUMP (1994)
70.FRENCH CONNECTION, THE (1971)
69.SHANE (1953)
68.AMERICAN IN PARIS, AN (1951)
67.MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE, THE (1962)
66.NETWORK (1976)
65.SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, THE (1991)
64.CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND (1977)
63.STAGECOACH (1939)
62.TOOTSIE (1982)
61.VERTIGO (1958)
60.RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (1981)
59.REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE (1955)
58.FANTASIA (1940)
57.THIRD MAN, THE (1949)
56.M*A*S*H(1970)
55.SOUND OF MUSIC, THE (1965)
54.ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT (1930)
53.AMADEUS (1984)
52.FROM HERE TO ETERNITY (1953)
51.PHILADELPHIA STORY, THE(1940)

Remember….These are my personal opinions. If you don’t like them, feel free to comment but I’m not changing my opinion to please anyone.