Starring: Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor
Director: Stanley Donen
Running Time: 102 mins
Singin’ In The Rain is an American film about a Hollywood film production company that, while making a difficult transition from silent cinema to the world of ‘talkies’, discovers a big problem with one of their main stars amidst this new era of cinema.
I’m not a fan of musicals, and this is one of the most musical musicals I’ve ever seen, and yet it had such a sense of fun and charm to it that I couldn’t resist enjoying it. It’s not only that it has a fun feel to it, the songs are nice to listen to, and its story is both historically and dramatically intriguing.
Now, as is with a lot of these comedies from yesteryear, there is the possibility that the humour can be a little bit dated. Sadly, that was partly the case in this film in the opening stages, as as the characters and setting were being established, there were a lot of jokes being thrown around, and it was difficult to laugh a lot, or be particularly interested in the initial stages of the film.
However, after the first twenty or so minutes, you get into the period which makes this film the classic that it is. It’s goodbye to awkward meetings and relationships, which weren’t that funny, and hello to both farcical and fun comedy, that’s a whole lot more entertaining to watch.
Throughout, there are loads of musical numbers left, right and centre, and although there’s the odd few which either go on a bit too long, or are a little slow to keep up the enjoyable atmosphere, there are some absolute classics (“Good Morning” being my favourite) that really add to the fun and enjoyment of the film.
However, there’s a whole lot more besides the laughs and the songs to this film. The story is also fascinating in two ways. Firstly, the battle of the studio and the main three characters against the rather deluded yet dastardly actress, as they realise she’s not ideal for a talkie is both hilarious and oddly exciting, as you seem to take sides and see her as a sort of bad guy, in a film that shouldn’t be at all like that, however that makes it even more entertaining.
Also, the story is historically interesting, as it centres around the development of talking pictures, and the evidently difficult transition made by the film industry in what is shown in this film to be a groundbreaking and fascinating new ‘gadget’.
One of the other things I loved about this movie was the cast. Every actor was perfectly picked for their role, and with such a wide range of personalities on screen, the performances are highly commendable, particularly those of the main three characters, who were immensely likeable and fun, fitting in perfectly with the atmosphere of the film.
Overall, this gets an 8.0, because although it may have started slowly, it was an interesting, and most of all fun sing-along story.