Production Company: Paramount
Top Billed Actors: Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Lupino Lane
IMDb Rating: 7.3
*Best Picture Nominee*
Won 0 Oscars
Nominated for 6 more:
Best Director - Ernst Lubitsch
Best Actor - Maurice Chevalier
Best Cinematography - Victor Milner
Best Art Direction - Hans Dreier
Best Sound - Franklin Hansen
Plot: A player in Paris gets sent home to his country to be punished by the queen by having to marry her. He then has to prove his manhood and puts the woman in her place.
The movie musical genre would become very popular in the years to come, culminating in its peak form in the 1960s. This film pioneered the genre in many positive ways. Songs were used within the plot as well as mere side attractions. They ranged from catchy to unbearable, but the quantity of songs was unrivaled in movies at the time. The soundtrack and dubbing were also added in post production, which aided the sound quality a great deal considering the early sound technology. For being one of the very first movie musicals, The Love Parade is excellent from a musical perspective. The plot is also interesting in that a man marries a queen and the traditional gender roles are reversed. The queen, Jeanette MacDonald in her first role, gets to call the shots while the man, Maurice Chevalier, sits idly in the palace. The banter and songs between one of the queen's servants, a woman, and Chevalier's servant, a man, is a highlight of the film.
The acting and pace are a somewhat different story. At first, Chevalier's French accent is charming and unique. It gets annoying very quickly. I liked a lot of the songs he participated in, but the accent somewhat ruined the music. MacDonald's high pitch singing does not shine through in 1920's sound technology. Aside from these minor gripes, the outdated acting isn't too bad here. After watching Disraeli (1929) and this movie, I have a new hope for the movies in the early '30s. The pace of this movie, however, does allow the plot to get stale. The wedding scene dragged on and on and the songs between the aforementioned servants, although they are outstanding, do not progress the story.
Overall, the outdated acting is bearable and the music and comedy contained within are also delightful. I am excited to see what else Lubitsch has to offer and I would recommend this to anyone who has an interest in the genre of movie musicals.
My Score: 6/10