“Footlight Parade” – Nathan’s Movie Challenge, Week 23
“Ah, talking pictures. It’s just a fad.”
Breakneck speed. It never lets up for even a second! This film’s got moxie, kid. I can’t remember the last time I smiled so much while watching a movie.
I love how Joan Blondell very nearly dropped “bitch” into the dialogue. That just doesn’t happen in 1933. Pre-Code is so much fun! They’re obviously testing the boundaries of the censors – complete with a character proxy in the movie, very meta – and pushing them to their absolute limit. It’s such a breath of fresh air for a classic film to be so risky in its content and presentation, and so unabashedly daring.
All the actors in this were fantastic… Incredible writing. Dazzling performances. Man, I adored this movie. Let’s see how the rankings shake out.
Footlight Parade was at the time of this review at #2563 on my Flickchart list of shame (ranked #3530 among the best films of all time). Here’s how it entered my chart:
Footlight Parade vs. Road to Perdition
A no contest win for Footlight Parade. It’s spectacular.
Footlight Parade vs. Moulin Rouge
There are some great visuals and anachronistic musical numbers in Moulin Rouge, but Ewan and Nicole have nowhere near the chemistry of any of the leads (or the supporting cast!) of Footlight Parade.
Footlight Parade vs. The Martian
I really enjoyed The Martian a lot, but Footlight Parade dazzled me.
Footlight Parade vs. The World’s End
There’s so much going on that’s perfectly executed in The World’s End that I have to allow it to win, but it’s a very close fight, indeed.
Footlight Parade vs. The Music Man
I’m pretty confident that The Music Man will always be my favorite musical of all-time. As much as I truly enjoyed Footlight Parade, The Music Man has a reserved space in my heart.
Footlight Parade vs. Zodiac
I’ll always be a Fincher fan, but there are many other films of his I prefer over the simply very, very good Zodiac. Footlight Parade is marvelous, and will win the matchup.
Footlight Parade vs. Black Swan
Aronofsky is another of my all-time favorite directors, but despite the beauty (and horror) present in Black Swan, I’m going to say that Footlight Parade is the better film through and through.
Footlight Parade vs. Cloverfield
I can’t quite articulate how impactful Cloverfield was for me, other than to say it’s one of my most electrified experiences in a theater. A solid battle – but the mystery monster movie will take the win.
Footlight Parade vs. The Ring
Joan Blondell, you rule.
Footlight Parade vs. Cube
Cube is a super-impressive movie for making the most of very little resources. Footlight Parade is simply a super-impressive movie.
Footlight Parade is now ranked #142 out of 1442 movies on my Best Movies of All-Time chart.
Next up is The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) and Open Range. In the meantime, check out the other films I’ve ranked during the challenge.