Thursday, November 18, 2010

Favorite Films: Funny Face

NOTE: While watching Funny Face for the tenth time I finally had a surge to change things up. We could all use a release after all and I've decided to begin piecing these articles together based on whatever film I have most recently re-watched. So Let's get to it.
The 1960s were a fun time for film. There were so many colors. Design came to a new peak in this decade. Oddly enough, Funny Face isn't from the 60s. Stanley Donen directed this offbeat musical in 1957. So why does it feel so Mad Men? I dunno. That's not really the point. The point is Funny Face, to me, is unencumbered joy. It's the movie that proves Audrey Hepburn (Oh Audrey =D) could really dance and sing, even if the producers of My Fair Lady didn't believe. After all she always wanted to be a dancer. And the way she moves its crazy to think she didn't get to do it more often.
Fred Astaire does a number on this film. He pulls off a wacky wonderful performance with only a small group of routines. He more or less comes into this thing as an actor before his dancing and singing abilities can be exploited, though they certainly are. You can't have Fred Astaire in any film without fully enjoying his talents. It almost seems sacrilege.

So Funny Face, as always, lives up to my childhood... teenhood... memory. It's fun, funky, and totally unexpected. But it feels like a classic musical and it's too bad we don't have more gems like this one.

The List So Far:
1927 - Metropolis - Fritz Lang
1928 - Steamboat Willie - Ub Iwerks
1931 - M - Fritz Lang
1932 - Tarzan, The Ape Man - W. S. Van Dyke
1933 - King Kong - Merian C. Cooper +
1934 - It Happened One Night - Frank Capra
1957 - Funny Face - Stanley Donen

1 comment:

  1. I could talk for ages about Funny Face. This movie made me realize why people do remakes: I'd want to remake Funny Face just so I could make Funny Face. But then I realize that it wouldn't be the same cast at all, and really it's all ABOUT them. Fred is great, Audrey is amazing, but Kay Thompson....oh, Kay Thompson I LOVE YOU! Last year, we watched this movie about six times in three weeks. It's so damn enjoyable! It is AT LEAST in my Top 25 of All Time (I really must have a look at that again). What gets me is that there are only seven songs and three main characters. And it's so simple!