Search - Gold Diggers of 1933 on DVD

Gold Diggers of 1933
Gold Diggers of 1933
NR     1hr 38min


Movie Details

Creators: Aline MacMahon, Warren William, Ruby Keeler, Ginger Rogers, Joan Blondell
Format: DVD
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1933
Run Time: 1hr 38min
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)

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Movie Reviews

"Honey, I'll Make 'Em Laugh at You Starvin to Death!"
Linda McDonnell | Brooklyn, U.S.A | 07/22/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"So Ned Sparks promises chorus girls Aline MacMahon, Ruby Keeler, Joan Blondell, and Ginger Rogers in this wonderful pre-Code movie about mounting a successful Broadway show during the height of the Great Depression. This is really two shows in one: The first concerns the aforementioned mounting of the show, with music and lyrics by likeable but mysterious Dick Powell, Ruby's new boyfriend. The second, and my favorite of the two, is how Dick's older brother and legal guardian, banker Warren William, arrives in town to pay off Dick's girlfriend. Trouble is, when he and friend Guy Kibbee arrive at the showgirls' apartment, they mistakenly believe Joan Blondell is the squeeze. This is where she and Aline decide to take the two swells for all their worth, like any self-respecting golddigger would have to. Expert comedic scenes follow as the two big businessmen are putty in the hands of the chorusgirls. This is the first time I ever saw Warren William, and when he puts the moves on Joan Blondell, I knew I had to find more movies with him. Losing his Boston reserve through too many drinks, he tells her he loves her, holding her with such passion as he kisses her that all her resistance melts away--this is the sexiest celluloid kiss I've ever seen. He's just incredible. And all this is in addition to Harry Warren's great score, including the naughty "Pettin' in the Park" , megahit "We're in the Money", romantic "Shadow Waltz", and the grand finale piece, "Remember My Forgotten Man", a paen to the fate of the WWI vets now on breadlines and living a Depression tramp's life. Consider "Golddiggers of 1933" as a time capsule back to the Great Depression's frothiest comedies--open and enjoy!"
They're STILL in the money--and for good reasons!
Matthew G. Sherwin | last seen screaming at Amazon customer service | 11/09/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This movie, Gold Diggers of 1933, is one of those excellent classics that time cannot render dated or corny in any way. How's about those musical numbers with that Busby Berkeley incredibly talented touch? How's about the cinematography? And how's about the casting of Ginger Rogers, Joan Blondell, Dick Powell, Ruby Keeler, and many more talented actors to make this film so very, very special! (Indeed, look for Busby Berkeley himself in the movie playing the role of the Call Boy!)

Although the principle plot concerns three young women desperately trying to make it during the depths of the Great Depression, viewers even today can relate to the tough economic times for many people throughout the world currently. The three young women, along with Dick Powell, try to put on a show but Brad's (Dick Powell's) older brother wants to get him away from what he feels is the cheap and tasteless world of the theater. And there's laughs, too! To keep the laughs coming there is some game playing--to the hilt! The girls convince Brad's older brother that Polly, Brad's girlfriend, is actually someone else! The girls then proceed to con J. Lawrence Bradford (Brad's older brother and trustee of his estate) and his sidekick (the family lawyer) into buying them hats, furs, pet dogs, and even a car! After many shenanigans there's a happy ending-but I won't spoil it for you here! GRIN

Meanwhile there's another plot going on--that of putting on the show so they can all become rich and famous. Of course, the numbers they perform are stellar and classic, and leave the question: how could they ever get a Broadway stage to accommodate all these actors at once in real life? But you know what? The answer is: who cares? GRIN The electric violins, fade-ins and choreography are very well done for the movies of the time and overall the movie holds your attention extremely well.

The movie ends with a spectacular number "The Forgotten Man." This was at the time a tribute to the World War One veterans who were now reduced to standing on breadlines for the little food they could obtain. The singing is superb, principally sung by Joan Blondell and Etta Moten. The audience sees the marching of the veterans which represents the struggles and battle they faced constantly during the war; then you see the men standing on breadlines and being chased away by police when they have nowhere to sleep but the sidewalk. I also agree with the reviewer who writes that they were reminded of the Vietnam War by this number. Very sad; and superbly done!

Other great numbers in the movie, as you may already know, are the opening number of "We're In The Money" and "Pettin' In The Park," which was extremely racy for its time. You will love these numbers!

The quality of the sound and image is excellent. The tape played well in my VCR. Of course, you don't get the extras you would have gotten on a DVD--can we get this on DVD, anyone? SMILE

I recommend this movie for classic film fans and fans of the numerous stars in the film. The musical numbers are excellent and every bit of what you'd expect from Busby Berkeley. This film is hard to find-for a good reason! It's excellent-buy it! GRIN
Great Pre-Code Musical
Samantha Kelley | USA | 07/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This film opens with a highly polished and extravagant musical number. All of the girls involved are absolutely gorgeous and wear giant coins over their scantily clad bodies. The number immediately grabs the viewer's attention. The song "We're in the Money" is sung by a young Ginger Rogers who delights by singing a section in pig latin. It is an ironic way to open the film because the subject is partially about struggling actors during the great depression.

The story itself centers on three actresses who room together. They are out of work because of the depression. One of them, played by Ruby Keeler, has her mind on the boy next door played by Dick Powell. She, along with her room mates played by Joan Blondell and Aline MacMahon, convince Powell to write the music for a new show they're putting on with an old friend. Powell also becomes producer.

The major number that comes from that show is "Pettin' in the Park," a risqué song about, well, pettin' in the park. Powell says that he's read that exercise in the park is what he needs. The lyrics remark, "Come on; I've been waiting long. Why don't we get started? Come on; maybe this is wrong. But gee, what of it? We just love it!" The song proceeds to turn into a dance break with a fun little sequence. However, some parts are rather shocking for the era like the silhouettes of women undressing and the finale in which a woman's chastity belt is cut open.

The story continues. The three girls learn that Powell is actually a rich man and that his brother has been sent to stop him from marrying Keeler (who thank goodness has not been given too many lines which she could have used to ruin the film!). The girls trick the brother into thinking Blondell is the fiancée and she plays a gold digger to the hilt. The scheme is fun and filled with great one-liners like, "Aww, you're as light was a hefer- uh, feather!" The subject of the final trick is again quite risqué for 1933. It would have never made it in the film had it been made during the production code.

Dick Powell's character is also something to marvel about. It was unique to find a mischievous grown man in films then.

"In the Shadows" is the next big song, a typical Busby Berkeley visual orgasm. The lyrics of the song are pretty and match the costumes which are reminiscent of the fairy costumes in Fantasia. The beginning of the song is illustrated by shadows that fit the subject, but the ending roams into a less fitting but still thrilling display.

The finale, "The Forgotten Man," is the most serious part of the film and is a commentary on life in the Depression. Blondell speaks the opening and she does so extremely well. She does not read the lines like a poem; she speaks them like they were her own. She seems very emotionally involved. The scenes in the song play similarly to the finale "42nd Street" in the film of the same name. This song is hard-hitting and should be as remembered as a symbol of the Depression as "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime" is."
Ereway inhay the oneymay!!
Chris Aldridge | Washington, DC USA | 10/31/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I've heard of this movie for years, but didn't actually see it until last week when Turner Classic Movies ran it. And it is positively stunning!! On the surface, it moves almost like a carbon copy of 42ND STREET- right up to the last-minute switch in players before the curtain goes up (although in this film, it's Dick Powell instead of Ruby Keeler). But its astringent look at trying to play Tin Pan Alley smack in the middle of the Depression gives it a very adult and tragic significance. It still has the Berkley dazzle- from the "Shadow Waltz" chorus girls (and electric violins) to the now-legendary "We're In The Money" dress rehearsal fronted by a pre-Astaire Ginger Rogers. (I was a teenager when my mother mentioned that one verse of this song was actually sung in Pig Latin- and I swore for twenty-five years that she was pulling my chain! It is easily one of the funniest and cleverest vocal interludes I've ever seen in a musical.) But the three girls implied in the film's title- Ruby Keeler, Aline McMahon, and especially the sharp, smart, and gorgeous Joan Blondell- are the best things in the movie. And Blondell fronts the sublime finale number "Forgotten Man-" which pays tribute to the men (and women) of WWI and the ironies which followed. The staging of it- the marching which goes from triumphant to tragic, the torchy vocal of Etta Moten (the black woman sitting in the windowsill), and the pullback shot of everyone coming downstage at the fadeout- is truly spectacular."