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Monday, July 10, 2017

The Broken Melody (1934)

Set in Paris, a struggling classical composer (John Garrick) falls under the spell of a self centered opera diva (Margot Grahame, THE INFORMER). He forsakes his true love (Merle Oberon) but his new life in international society ends in murder. Directed by Bernard Vorhaus (THE AMAZING MR. X), this hoary semi-musical melodrama creaks something awful. The protagonist is unlikable so one can't really feel sorry for him. Garrick is so wooden and unappealing that I got a perverse sympathy for Grahame's shallow and bitchy wife! The songs are a trite lot. Indeed, when Garrick composes an opera and we see it performed, it's just awful yet it gets a standing ovation and everyone declares it's a masterpiece! As if. The Devil's Island sequence alleviates some of the tedium briefly but then we're back on the sappy train. Unless you're a Merle Oberon fanboy, this can be safely skipped. Also known as THE VAGABOND VIOLINIST. With Austin Trevor and Charles Carson.

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