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Broadway Gondolier (1935)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 27 July 1935 (USA)
Dick Purcell is an American taxi driver who wants to become a singer promoting cheese products. Oddly he thinks the way to do it is to become a gondolier from Venice. Along the way he sings and woos a sassy secretary Alice.

Director:

Lloyd Bacon

Writers:

Sig Herzig (story), E.Y. Harburg (story) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dick Powell ... Richard 'Dick' Purcell, aka Ricardo Purcelli
Joan Blondell ... Alice Hughes
Adolphe Menjou ... Professor Eduardo de Vinci
Louise Fazenda ... Mrs. Flaggenheim
William Gargan ... Cliff Stanley
George Barbier ... Music Critic Hayward
Grant Mitchell ... E.V. Richards, Radio Producer
Ted Fio Rito ... Ted Fio Roto - Orchestra Leader (as himself)
The Mills Brothers ... The Four Mills Brothers (as The Four Mills Brothers)
Donald Mills ... Member of the Mills Brothers
Harry Mills ... Member of the Mills Brothers
Herbert Mills Herbert Mills ... Member of the Mills Brothers
John Mills John Mills ... Member of the Mills Brothers
Hobart Cavanaugh ... Music Critic Gilmore
Joe Sawyer ... 'Red' (as Joseph Sauers)
Edit

Storyline

Dick Purcell is an American taxi driver who wants to become a singer promoting cheese products. Oddly he thinks the way to do it is to become a gondolier from Venice. Along the way he sings and woos a sassy secretary Alice.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

LOVERS ENRAPTURED -- ...Sweethearts enthralled in the light of venetian moonbeams and music!


Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 July 1935 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Efterlyst i radioen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joseph E. Bernard is listed in the studio records in the role of "Official", but was not seen in the print. See more »

Quotes

Professor Eduardo de Vinci: Miss Hughes, I salute you.
Alice Hughes: Go as far as you like.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Tiny Toon Adventures: Psychic Fun-omenon Day (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

About a Quarter to Nine
(1935) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played by the radio orchestra at rehearsal
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Terrific Cross Between A Musical and Wacky Comedy
18 January 2007 | by HarlowMGMSee all my reviews

Broadway GONDOLIER is not very well known even among movie buffs but it's one of the most delightful musicals of the 1930's, as much a comedy as a musical. The plot - some plain Joe being hyped up under a bogus image into stardom - has been used in about a million films from CHICAGO to SLIGHTLY FRENCH to TOOTSIE, but it works time and time again, and most definitely here.

Dick Powell stars as a taxi driver who dreams of singing stardom. He blows his big chance by being late for a radio audition and as a result his only option for crashing radio is supplying animal sounds for a kiddie program, a job he loses when his wisecrack about performing for "little brats" goes over the airwaves in a hilarious bit that recalls several infamous real-life radio tongue slips, most of which happened several years after this film. Now unemployable on American radio, he ventures to Italy with his singing teacher Adolphe Menjou in hopes of new opportunities, quite coincidentally at the same time, the secretary from the radio show (and Powell crush) Joan Blondell accompanies cheese heiress Louise Fazenda to Italy to find a new singing star for HER radio program.

There's lots of good comedy here and Dick Powell has never been better in my opinion, ably matched by the always superb Joan Blondell in a somewhat secondary role as the girl who opens doors for him. Powell and Blondell have an excellent "first meeting" scene at the radio station with snappy dialog and comebacks in best 1930's tradition. Louise Fazenda, nearing the end of her very long screen career is cast in an atypical role as a rich matron whose devotion to the memory of her late husband may be tested by her crush on the Italian heartthrob she "discovers", ironically Judy Canova (who later became a star playing hillbilly hayseed roles in the Fazenda tradition) has a brief role in the film as a part of a hillbilly vocal group.

There's a wonderful musical interlude with the Mills Brothers and a hilarious parody of a radio show theme song, this one about the wonders of cheese. Most definitely worth seeking out, not only for fans of 30's musicals but of 30's comedies.


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