When I saw "Humoresque" it reminded me of "Rain" and I cringed." ~Joan Crawford
Cast: Joan Crawford~John Garfield~Oscar Levant~Carroll Naish~Joan Chandler~Tom D'Andrea~Peggy Knudsen~Ruth Nelson~Craig
Stevens~Paul Cavanaugh~Richard Gaines~John Abbott~Bobby Blake~Tommy Cook~Don McGuire~Fritz Leiber~Peg La Cenrta~Nestor Paiva~Richard
Director: Jean Negulesco
Producer: Jerry Wald
Box Office Figures for "Humoresque":
Top Grossing Film Position: #46 out of #75
Gross Rentals: $2,600,000.
If you have seen this movie, please write a review below. Once your review is submitted, I will post the review below.
Thank you for your review on this film.
Stars: Four stars
Review: "Humoresque" is one of cinema's sublime masterpieces. It is the apex of what any art form can be. It
has a rich, complex script penned by Clifford Odets (based on the Fanny Hurst novel); superb performances; gorgeous black
and white photography by Ernest Haller (love especially that shot through a wine glass); impeccable, beautifully drawn characters;
believable emotion; glamour; and music -- music throughout that is close to heaven. The violin solos are played by Isaac Stern.
It is as haunting, sophisticated and classily romantic as Hollywood ever gets.
Gritty Paul Borae (John Garfield - never better or sexier) overcomes his humble background in the slums of New York City
(largely Eastern European then) to become a concert violinist, generously aided by his mercurial patron/love interest Mrs.
Helen Wright (Joan Crawford). He exposes the vulnerability beneath her facade of sarcasm, bile and alcohol, and she longs
to possess him. The dynamics between Garfield and Crawford are complex, volatile and intense. Crawford not only looks beautiful
in exquisitely tasteful Adrian, but her performance is perhaps her best ever -- understated, unaffected and genuine. It is
in films like this that one sees why Crawford was Crawford. Although she doesn't appear until thirty minutes into the film,
once she does, she dominates seamlessly. There are numerous dazzling close-ups where a range of emotion and story are conveyed
on the faces without a single word. The ending when a distraught and inebriated Crawford walks on that beach in the moonlight
towards the sea in her glistening, rhinestone-studded black gown to the strains of Liebestod from Wagner's Tristan and Isolde
is one of Hollywood's greatest. It reaches a crescendo as in the music. As someone put it, it's Hollywood hitting on all eight
cylinders. Oscar Levant is on hand as well to provide comic relief and brilliant piano solos as Borae's best friend Sid.
Among my favorite exchanges in a film brimming with wonderful dialogue:
Paul Borae to an inebriated Helen: "Drink your coffee."
Helen Wright: "Here we go again. Only a man who doesn't drink thinks that black coffee sobers you up."
Sid: "I envy people who drink. At least they know what to blame everything on."
Helen: "If it's so simple, why don't you drink?"
Stars: 5 star
Review: I thought this was a very great movie. It made me cry at the end of it. I was really shocked at the ending, but
I must say, I was really surprised I liked it . I thought this movie was one of Joan's best.