Fort Augustus
Footlight Parade

Lloyd Bacon, USA, 1933, 104 mins, Cert U

Screening at: Cawdor, Wed 5th August, 6:30pm   |   Nairn, Sun 9th August 5pm

Still from the movieAt the Ballerina Ballroom, Joel Coen suggested that we show the 30s musical Dames, and it had us dancing in the street. Can we top it this year? Try this: Footlight Parade is again set in the world of chorus girls and choreographers. There’s a recession on (sounds familiar). Jimmy Cagney, at his rat-tat-tat best, plays a stage producer who’s running out of ideas, so he starts to make filmed musical inserts. Under office girl Ruby Keeler’s dowdy exterior is, guess what, a star-is-born hoofer. Joan Blondell outdoes her sassy best with lines like “Don't worry sister, as long they've got sidewalks, you'll have a job!”

Its hard to believe that anyone in the world imagined the By A Waterfall routine - how do psychedelics and camp and microscope imagery fit together? But somebody did and his name, of course, was Busby Berkeley. The lighting is by George Barnes who shot Hitchcock’s Rebecca and Force of Evil, and the design is by legendary Anton Grot, who did Mildred Pierce.

Footlight Parade is pure entertainment, triple distilled. The stampede starts here.

Buy tickets Get the DVD

Related Links