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Danny Kaye movies

White Christmas (1954) starring Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby

White Christmas

Editorial review of White Christmas (1954) starring Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, courtesy of Amazon.com

This semi-remake of‚ Holiday Inn‚ (the first movie in which Irving Berlin’s perennial, Oscar-winning holiday anthem was featured) doesn’t have much of a story, but what it does have is choice‚ Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, an‚ all-Irving Berlin song score, classy direction by Hollywood vet Michael Curtiz (Casablanca,‚ The Adventures of Robin Hood), VistaVision (the very first feature ever shot in that widescreen format), and ultrafestive Technicolor! (more…)

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Pinocchio (1976), starring Danny Kaye and Sandy Duncan

Pinocchio

Pinocchio (1976), starring Danny Kaye and Sandy Duncan

A feature-length musical motion picture of the classic tale about the puppet who becomes a real boy. Danny Kaye plays “Gepetto,” the woodcarver; and Sandy Duncan plays “Pinocchio,” the irrepressible puppet. (more…)

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A Song is Born, starring Danny Kaye and Virginia Mayo

A Song is Born

Review of A Song is Born, starring Danny Kaye and Virginia Mayo

A Song is Born is a very unusual Danny Kaye film, in that it’s less of a comedy and more of a musical romance.  In no small way, it’s an opportunity for a variety of the leading musicians of the time to perform, including Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman, Louis Armstrong, Lionel Hampton, and Benny Carter. Other notable musicians playing themselves in the cast include Charlie Barnet, Mel Powell, Harry Babasin, Louis Bellson, Al Hendrickson, The Golden Gate Quartet, Russo and the Samba Kings, The Page Cavanaugh Trio, and Buck and Bubbles. (more…)

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Skokie (1981) - a Danny Kaye movie made for TV, co-starring Brian Dennehy, Eli Wallach

Skokie

Skokie (1981) – a Danny Kaye movie made for TV, co-starring Brian Dennehy, Eli Wallach

Skokie is many things.  It is Danny Kaye‘s final film.‚  It is Danny Kaye’s only strictly dramatic role.  Skokie is a balanced view at two sides of an issue.  It looks at the survivors of the Nazi holocaust.  Skokie provides wonderful acting by some truly great actors, including Danny Kaye, Eli Wallach, Brian Dennehy, and Carl Reiner.  It is an absolute classic, that everyone should watch. (more…)

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Wonder Man, starring Danny Kaye

Wonder Man

Wonder Man (1945) starring Danny Kaye, Virginia Mayo, Vera-Ellen

Danny Kaye‘s Wonder Man serves as a vehicle for Danny Kaye to show off his versatility in singing, dancing, and comedy.  Danny Kaye plays twin roles – €literally.  He’s Edwin Dingle, an academic bookworm, and his twin brother, Buzzie Bellew, famous nightclub entertainer.  Buzzie is the only eyewitness to a murder by the villain of the movie, Ten Grand Jackson.  In addition, Buzzie is engaged to Midge (played by Vera-Ellen, his romantic lead from‚ White Christmas), although he keeps “postponing” the wedding.‚  Early in the movie, after a very entertaining sample of Buzzy’s nightclub act (which gave me a better appreciation for Danny Kaye’s dancing ability), Buzzy is murdered by two of Ten Grand Jackson’s goons. (more…)

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On the Riviera, starring Danny Kaye, Gene Tierney, Corinne Calvet

On the Riviera

Editorial Review of On the Riviera (1951) starring Danny Kaye, Gene Tierney, Corinne Calvet, courtesy of Amazon.com

Just as Love Affair inspired An Affair to Remember and Sleepless in Seattle, Folies Bergere inspired That Night in Rio and On the Riviera. In Walter Lang’s Technicolor version, Danny Kaye‚ takes on a dual role previously assumed by Maurice Chevalier and Don Ameche.  A master of mistaken identity, Kaye makes it his own. His Jack Martin is an American song and dance man based in Monte Carlo. When playboy aviator Henri Duran (Kaye with French accent) returns from his latest adventure, Martin notices a resemblance. He also notices Duran’s neglected wife, Lili (Gene Tierney). After Duran is called away on business, Martin is enlisted to impersonate him for an important function. That gives him the chance to cozy up to Lili–and infuriate dance partner Colette (Corinne Calvet). Duran pays him back with an impersonation of his own. (more…)

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Me and the Colonel, starring Danny Kaye

Me and the Colonel

Me and the Colonel (1958) starring Danny Kaye, Curt Jurgens, Nicole Maurey

Me and the Colonel, starring Danny KayeMe and the Colonel‚ is a very different Danny Kaye comedy.  It’s very funny, very entertaining, and highly recommended.  But it’s also not what you normally expect from a Danny Kaye movie.  There’s no singing or dancing, and the setting is much more serious – €the invasion of Paris, France by Nazi Germany during World War II. (more…)

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The Inspector General, starring Danny Kaye

The Inspector General

The Inspector General (1949) starring Danny Kaye, Walter Slezak, Barbara Bates

“The Inspector General, generally he inspects.”

The Inspector General, starring Danny KayeI’m a longtime fan of‚ Danny Kaye – €one of the screen’s greatest clowns, he has room to truly strut his stuff in this wonderful film. The movie begins as Georgi (played by Danny Kaye) is working with his partner Yakov (played wonderfully by Walter Slezak).  They are a pair of traveling snake oil salesmen.  €Georgi, of course, feels quite bad about selling the bogus goods to innocent peasants, and nearly gets the pair hung.  The stage is set with the two main characters: Georgi the nice, sweet, simple, illiterate, dumb-as-a-stump, lovable waif at large in the world, and Yakov, his only friend, who would gladly sell him down the river in a moment. Frankly, Yakov is the finest example of this type of character I’ve ever seen.  He’s simultaneously likable and despicable, and a joy to watch.

The pair soon separates, and Georgi stumbles into a town, where he’s first imprisoned as a vagrant, then (incorrectly) assumed to be the corruption-overthrowing Inspector General, who’s supposedly traveling in disguise. The mistaken identity is played to the hilt by Yakov, who returns to take advantage of the situation, and to milk the town’s corrupt officials. (more…)

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Hans Christian Andersen (1952) starring Danny Kaye

Hans Christian Andersen

Hans Christian Andersen (1952) starring Danny Kaye

Synopsis of Hans Christian Andersen

A fantasy fairy tale about the life of Hans Christian Andersen weaving some of his most famous tales into the story, starring Danny Kaye as the great storyteller.  It includes some truly great musical moments, such as  InchwormThe Ugly DucklingThe Emperor’s New Clothes, etc.

Review of‚ Hans Christian Andersen‚ starring Danny Kaye

I hadn’t seen Danny Kaye’s Hans Christian Andersen‚ in many years.  Not since my childhood, actually.  There are certain movies that are magical when you’re a child, but don’t work as well when you re-watch them as an adult.  Disney’s Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is a good example.‚  Thankfully, Hans Christian Andersen‚ doesn’t fall into that category.  I enjoyed it as much as an adult as I did as a child; perhaps more. (more…)

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The Court Jester‚ (1955) starring Danny Kaye, Angela Lansbury, Glynis Johns, Basil Rathbone

The Court Jester

Review of The Court Jester (1955) starring Danny Kaye, Angela Lansbury, Glynis Johns, Basil Rathbone

I can safely say that The Court Jester with Danny Kaye is one of the funniest movies that I’ve ever seen.  The film begins in medieval England with a band of outlaws led by the Black Fox, determined to put the rightful king of England on the throne.  The king is only a baby, with the tell-tale birthmark, a purple pimpernel, on his royal bottom.

In charge of the infant is Hubert Hawkins, a carnival performer played wonderfully by Danny Kaye.  He and Maid Jean (played by Glynnis Johns) must take the child to safety, hidden inside a secret compartment in a cart, as Danny Kaye pretends to be an old man, who has to ‘œinterpret’ for his ‘œdeaf granddaughter’ when interrogated by the king’s men – €a very, very funny scene – ‘she stutters’. (more…)

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