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4.5 out of 5 stars19
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on 21 November 2010
Containing "Gilda" "Circus World" "Miss Sadie Thompson" "Salome" " The Lady From Shanghai" "You'll Never Get Rich" This is an extremely fair representation of Rita Hayworth's most famous role's. Gilda is a superb film noir from 1946 which catapulted Rita Hayworth into super stardom for good reason, she sizzles alongside Glenn Ford as a bad girl who if she had been a saloon wouldve been "called the bar nothing!", Circus World is one of those Big Top Drama's involving John Wayne and Claudia Cardinale with Rita as Cardinale's long lost mother who ran away years before, she gives a sensitive performance in what is otherwise a bit of a dud. Miss Sadie Thompson was Rita's return to Columbia after she divorced Prince Aly Khan and contains a fruity portrayal of the well worn classic with Rita performing "The Heat is On", Salome also from 1953 is a very classy Sword and Sandal Epic perfect for a Sunday afternoon co-starring Charles Laughton as the vile King Herod and Judith Anderson as Herodias. Rita is of course Salome and her version of the Dance of the Seven veils is fantastic. The Lady From Shanghai is Orson Welles classic noir from 1948 when he famously chopped off Hayworths Red Hair and made her a blonde! It works beautifully and is a gorgeous addition to the collection. "You'll Never Get Rich" is from 1941 when Rita was a burgeoning star and casts her opposite Fred Astaire as a young dancer. Their initial Tap Routine is fantastic. If you are a fan of classic films but havent experienced Hayworth yet this is a good place to start!
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on 7 February 2006
As if set out to prove there never was a woman like Rita Hayworth herself (as opposed to the tagline for Gilda), her very own box-set in the 'Screen Godesses' collection is her most essential package yet. Her signature role as the femme fatale Gilda has lost none of its steam and sizzling charisma: her dancing alone transforming the title into much more than what was only set out to be another Columbia B-style picture for Hayworth to star. That is to say, now on to a good thing with their 1 and only genuine star, the studio had very little in the way of titles suitable for her. Things would change after the success of 'Gilda'. Her next film released would be 'Down To Earth' but 'The Lady From Shanghai' has became the most critically acclaimed of all her films as time has went by, and it is not hard to see why. Hayworth is the gelid blonde Elsa, and her performance her most icy and lingering. This set does well to avoid repeating the contents as her previous collection, and we get the first of her pairings with Fred Astaire, 'You'll Never Get Rich'. ALthough it is arguably inferior to it's 'sequel' it is nevertheless great fun to see 2 great stars working their magic as if it were no great effort at all. However, some titles are just too essential in her career to ommit for purposes of appealing to the casual fan, and 'Miss Sadie Thompson' certainly has the lady in fine mode. It was her first big chance, Shanghai notwithstanding, to show what she was really made of. Critics applauded her like never before, for now experience was matching her looks, and it could no longer be denied Ms Hayworth was a rather fine actress to match the best of them. Letting itself down slightly were the censored script and an unenthusiastic turn from a co-star, but her number 'The Heat Is On' was a tremendous success and a revelation. Following the run of 2nd-rate scripts she was offered after returing to films was 'Salome' (also making its D.V.D debut in any territory). Write this one off at your peril for it is gorgeous to look at - though clumsily shot in places - with Hayworth simply taking one's breath away. Her cummulative showcase in 'the dance of seven veils' was as dramatic and almost suffocatingly glamourous; Hayworth had that rare ability to capture your heart and imagination, and buying these films grouped together is worth it for this highly-charged scene alone. Regardless of these two films writing, both were very successful: she still had huge box-office. Rita went on to make films and continue working well into the mid seventies, but 'Circus World' (1964) was the last big budget film to really do her justice, and was also a massive crowd-drawer. It is sad to bid her farewell, but fitting. True, she took 2nd female billing behind rising European starlett Claudia Cardinale, but she argued herself if the part was great then who cared? Her performance is poignant and poetic, and she garnered her only true acting acknowledgement for it in the form of a Golden Globe 'best actress' nomination. It is not hard to understand why, and the old magic certainly had not left her. The overall release is bereft of any substantial Hayworth extras, although one does get a Welles-focused Lady From Shanghai commentary, but if it is a documentary being desired then look no further than Playboy Presents Rita, which is narrated by none other than Kim Bassinger. 'Screen Godesses: Rita Hayworth' is a terrific package, and a timely reminder of 1 of Hollywoods greatest stars, the original 'Love Goddess'.
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These six films are a fine tribute to Rita Hayworth, an archetypical screen goddess leading a turbulent off screen life encompassing at least five marriages (all very short). Originally a professional dancer who progressed to films she was never a great actress and is summed up in her own quote, "Every man I have known has fallen in love with Gilda and wakened with me". All her songs were dubbed by other singers, a usual practice in those days. Her career declined during the sixties (being replaced at Columbia by Kim Novak) and sadly she died suffering from Alzheimer's disease in 1987.

GILDA (1946) - Hayworth's finest films, and she is absolutely stunning throughout, and the only film in the box where she looks consistently beautiful.

With great acting from Glen Ford and George Macready, beautiful photography and a dark love triangle that grips you for every second.

SALOME (1953) - is entertainment not biblical epic, bright and colourful and frankly pretty feeble, only saved by two fine performances.

A vehicle for Rita Hayworth, lovely and remote befitting a screen goddess, but the dance of the seven veils is a joke, I have seen more erotic performances in Richard Strauss's opera Salome.

By far the best performances are from Charles Laughton as a lascivious Herod, outstanding as he salivates with desire over Salome and Judith Anderson as his queen, an enjoyable and really nasty couple

The remainder of the strong cast never achieve better than adequate, probably a reflection on the screen play and direction rather than the actors.

YOU'L NEVER GET RICH (1941) - The only excuse for watching this film, and a pretty good one, is to see some lovely dancing from Fred Astaire and Rita Hayworth plus good tap dance solos from Astaire. Unfortunately the dances are rather thin on the ground and embedded in a pretty feeble (or maybe the humour has dated) wartime plot.

MISS SADIE THOMPSON (1953) - Made the same year as Salome yet Hayworth looks older. This is a really strong performance from Hayworth with a very erotic dance and some rather cheesy songs. However it is her assumption of the role that impresses and carries the film.

Ferrer as Davidson the loathsome bigoted and influential missionary vies with Aldo Ray as marine sergeant O'Hara, one trying to save her soul and the other to save her as a human being create convincing tension. This is one of the best films in the box.

LADY FROM SHANGHAI (1948) - is a superb film noir. Orson Welles plays Michael O'Hara a type of philosophical drifter who falls for Elsa Rosalie Bannister when he sees her riding through the park in a horse drawn cab. At the time they were real life husband and wife who were separated and Hayworth hoped the film would heal the marriage, but they were divorced before it was released two years later. Although only thirty in some scenes she looks considerably older, but maybe this was due to ill health that delayed the filming from time to time.

The other main characters are two lawyers, Everett Sloan as Arthur Bannister (Elsa's Husband) and an extraordinary performance from his partner George Grisby played by Glen Anders.

I find Hayworth fascinating in this film, there is a scene early on where with the blond hair she had for this film is so reminiscent of Kim Novak in "Strangers when we Meet (1961) even to minor facial expressions (but if anyone was influenced by anyone it was Novak who didn't make her first film for another six years).

Full of scenes that have been imitated or re-invented in numerous movies this is a seminal movie as well as a great vehicle for Hayworth.

MAGNIFICENT SHOWMAN aka CIRCUS WORLD (1964) - This is a warm hearted entertaining film that must include the best part of an afternoon at the circus. A great film for a Sunday afternoon's viewing with a young family.

John Wayne is Matt Masters who for fourteen years has been looking for his lost love Lili (Rita Hayworth) and finally decides to follow her to Europe. With his circus and Lili's daughter Toni (Claudia Cardinale) he struggles with one disaster after another

Hayworth gives one of her better acting performances in the short supporting role of Lili. It is difficult to see why this film (enjoyable as it is) was chosen unless it was to illustrate the decline in her career following the divorce from Aly Khan.

FINAL COMMENT -the films are good but apart from an inconvenient elaborate box this is an extremely poorly presented collection, the six DVDs are in standard retail cases with no inserts, perversely the only substantial extras are a commentary and extended interview devoted entirely to Orson Welles, and in a collection devoted to the most popular pin up of the war years there is no booklet, not a single picture.
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on 29 December 2005
Wow! I was so thrilled to receive this stunning dvd set for Christmas! The two best films are The Lady from Shanghai & Gilda and these are two fabulous examples of film noir! You will love Rita Hayworth on your screen. She can act & she can dance all the while looking stunning in her gowns. Just breathtaking!
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on 16 May 2015
The value for money is there with the number of films. BUT several of the films are so poor that you would rather not have them.
"SALOME" - I bought the set to see what Charles Laughton made of Herod - oh dear, what a wan attempt at a great story. A story of extremes - in religion and love and vengeance - which was cast aside for a made-up love story filmed on a low budget with poor sets and even poorer costumes. Rita hayworth as always looked stunning and did a professional job with the rotten script. Laughton barely concealed his contempt for what he was doing. Even Stewart Granger couldn't make much of his spurious Centurion. All in all it was work-a-day stuff and a waste of talent.
"YOU'LL NEVER GET RICH" - I was looking forward to the Fred Astaire movie , and certainly Hayworth danced beautifully. However this was a real turkey as a film , with a typical wartime plot about the army and show-business. Astaire was far too old to play the hero and the choreography was poor stuff compared to his work with Ginger Rogers. I whizzed through it anxious to end my embarrassment.
"MISS SADIE THOMPSON" - The other embarrassment was the remake of Bette Davis' 'Rain'; supposedly full of sex and sin. Oh what a mess. Hayworth is not up to this kind of sleaziness, and the whole film seemed to shy clear of real sex and real pain. In what seemed to be a 'Star among
the soldiers' kind of musical comedy, the suicide of the dead-pan clergyman [Jose Ferrer] fell flat . It was as though the real story of Rain had been set aside. Another slow & embarrassing film.
The 3 other films in the box were all excellent.
"THE LADY FROM SHANGHAI" - Wonderful to see an Orson wells film with Hayworth playing a very sexy & mysterious character against Welles' Irish brute [Pity about the Irish accent - not his forte] This film had a real menace, moved swiftly from one mystery to another and left you totally confused at the end. Wonderful stuff.
"MAGNIFICENT SHOWMAN" - I am no fan of John Wayne, but in this film he was playing somewhat against his usual character. There was real tenderness and romance in his portrayal of a lover meeting up again with a tragic heroine. Hayworth was filmed without close-ups and was scarcely given the screen time her character deserved; which may be due to her failing looks and memory.
"GILDA" - Finally Hayworth's most prestigious film, in which she smouldered all through. Good plot good acting and great pace, with the feel of Casablanca without its charm. Well worth a watch!
i was amazed at how often she was given songs when she was always dubbed. Strange.
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on 31 August 2013
excellent compilation of some of rita's most famous films. decent image and sound, and an unbeatable price. these films prove that she was no mere sex-bomb, but could really act. i highly recommend it.
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on 1 April 2013
Wow.........what a Goddess! Really enjoyed watching this box set. Would highly recommend if you love the silver screen era and glamour that goes with it. I would buy again if I had to! :-)
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on 19 April 2013
I bought it for mymum who is 92 and she said it was lovely - brought back great memories of when stars had talent
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on 3 July 2011
In this you'll find Salome, You'll Never Get Rich (with Fred Astaire), Magnificent Showman (with John Wayne and Claudia Cardinale), The Lady From Shanghai (with her then husband Orson Welles), Miss Sadie Thompson (with Jose Ferrer) and Hayworth's signature role in Gilda. Add extra material in some of the discs.
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on 1 September 2013
I choose this purchase for my granddaughter, as she loves old movies and I knew she would love this, I got it for her birthday and it came in record time (I've never had an Amazon order late at all Great .
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