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Thursday, August 16, 2012

One Touch Of Venus (1948)

An intoxicated department store window dresser (Robert Walker) kisses an expensive life size statue of the goddess Venus. The kiss brings her (in the form of Ava Gardner) to life and complications ensue when he is charged with stealing the statue. Based on the hit Broadway musical of the same name, the film has bowdlerized almost the entire Kurt Weill and Ogden Nash score and retained only three of its songs. Of course, they kept the haunting love ballad Speak Low which was the show's breakout hit. With the songs cut, one could hardly call it a musical but a comical farce with a few songs thrown in. As such, it's modestly entertaining but hardly memorable. Physically, Gardner is perfect casting as Venus and she goes through her paces like a well trained seal but she lacks a comedienne's comic timing. Everyone does their own singing except Gardner who's dubbed by Eileen Wilson. Directed by William A. Seiter. With Dick Haymes, Olga San Juan, Tom Conway, Sara Allgood and Eve Arden doing her patented wise cracking spinster number.

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