Boulevard! A Hollywood Story

2021

Documentary

0
IMDb Rating 7.1 10 126

cinema on cinema cinema history stage musical usa cinema

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Plot summary


Uploaded by: FREEMAN
October 29, 2022 at 10:30 PM

Top cast

Glenn Close as Self
George Takei as Self
720p.WEB
787.75 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
24 fps
1 hr 25 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by baygelldawg 6 / 10

Intriguing, but loses steam quickly

The problem with Gloria Swanson trying to make a musical out of "Sunset Boulevard" is a) she could not sing, b) the couple she hired to create the show were not good songwriters, and c) she did not have the rights to the material.

A is the elephant in the room. B is hinted at but not faced head-on and the songs are presented as if they could support a Broadway show. (They couldn't.) And C ends up being a blessing because if this show had opened, Swanson would have received the worst reviews of her life.

The "angle" of this documentary is that the songwriters were a gay couple whose relationship lasted for about as long as they were on Swanson's payroll.

The problem is that by the time the director of this documentary decided to make it, all the characters in this story were dead. So we are left with video footage of a previous interview of one of the songwriters, an audio recording of an unexplained and undated interview with the other songwriter, and talking head "experts" telling us about Swanson's personality and life. Paper doll-style animation is used to illustrate the interviews.

The big tease is that one number from this musical was performed on the Steven Allen show. The movie opens with a few seconds of this clip but you have to stay tuned to the end of the movie to see more of it. The clip only highlights that Swanson cannot sing and that the score is nothing you would walk out of the theater humming.

One of the talking heads is Swanson's granddaughter, who looks quite a bit like Swanson and gushes about how wonderful her grandmother was and how close they were. Nice, but it does not add any insight. The truth is that after Sunset Boulevard (the movie), Swanson was careening from career to career, selling clothes, hawking cosmetics, "writing" a memoir, making TV appearances, and otherwise grasping for something to do once Hollywood was finished with her. This attempt at a musical was just one more of her straws.

There is lots of time wasted showing the director of the documentary walking around and looking for people, introducing himself to the talking heads, and other filler that does nothing to move the story forward or inform the audience.

This could have been reduced to 60 minutes without losing anything of importance. As fun and campy as the topic sounds, it is not enough to sustain a feature-length film.

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