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4.4 out of 5 stars
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4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 31 May 2009
Although not the first British musical, Evergreen is acknowledged to be one of the landmark films made on this side of the Atlantic in the 1930s. Adapted from the Rodgers and Hart stage musical, two great new songs were composed for the film version - "When You've Got A Little Springtime In Your Heart" and "Over My Shoulder", which became the song most associated with Miss Matthews.

The word "star" is applied to anyone that can breathe these days, however Jessie Matthews was a true star. She commands each film scene she is in with her beauty, style and grace. Jessie had that extra something which made her a special performer and one whose charisma is as fresh as ever seventy-five years after this film was made.

The highlight is perhaps the "Dancing On The Ceiling" number staged in a classic art deco house, or is it the grand finale which is a fine production number rivalling the great early American film musical presentations. It is all fine entertainment.

Evergreen's release on DVD is long overdue. I would have liked some extras, apart from a photo gallery. A documentary on Jessie Matthews would have been an appropriate inclusion, but at least Jessie is now firmly preserved in the digital age in one of her greatest movies.
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on 19 July 2009
This is the story of a Music Hall star Harriet Green (Jessie Matthews)who 'retires' at the height of her career rather than be involved in a dishonest deal with her ex-lover and father of her illegitimate child.

Through a 'stunt' devised by a publicist (played by Barry Mackay) Harriet's daughter pretends to be her mother returning to the stage many years later. Jessie of course played this role very successfully on stage years before the film was made. It is a real gem with lovely songs by Rodgers and Hart.

Jessie Matthews was at the height of her beauty at the end of her twenties and early thirties in my opinion. Jessie sings, acts and dances exceptionally supported by a good cast. This includes her talented husband Sonnie Hale who was never a great singer, but could dance, act and be very funny. Mackay who was her lead in other films is great too.

As with the recently released 'There Goes the Bride', I bought this because I only had a home made DVD. The picture quality and soundtrack is excellent with bonus pictures. Another one of my favourites. I hope Granada plan to issue all of Miss Matthews' films on DVD. I would be happy to have them in 'official' releases like this. If you haven't discovered the lovely Jessie Matthews yet, here is your chance. Highly recommended.
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on 28 May 2009
Hooray
At long last Jessie on DVD.
Evergreen lives up to its title it will stay in your memory allways as it has mine...
Lets hope the other Jessie Matthews musicals become available soon.
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on 6 April 2009
This prestige Gaumont British film was released in April 1934 in Britain and December 1934 in the US. It was based on the RICHARD RODGERS-LORENZ
HART musical "EVER GREEN" never played in the US (!) and first played in London on 3 December 1930. The adaptation by EMLYN WILLIAMS adds to the prestige. The film keeps three songs .from the show and adds four songs by the American HARRY M. WOODS (with the original credit of: "additional material by...").
But the prestige didn't create the huge success: it is all about JESSIE MATTHEWS, wonderful as a singer, dancer, actress, woman.
She stays the only one, with DORIS DAY, to have that elegance: beautiful girl next door and sophisticated woman.
It was the first British film musical and still one of the best.
Sonnie Hale is not my cup of tea, but it's all right. BETTY BALFOUR, best known for her numerous silent films, is very good. All technical credits superior.
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I was disappointed that the song 'over my shoulder' was only shown at the end - from the clips I had seen on YouTube which encouraged me to buy the DVD - the impression was given that this song was combined with another in a medley as it is in the YouTube clip and there was a reprise - as there often is in musicals - at the end - the other song Tinkle, tinkle, tinkle, was not sung as expected by Jessie Matthews but by another female and the male actor Sonnie Hale.

When I tried to find Tinkle, tinkle, tinkle via Google Search - the sheet music I mean, all I got was some asinine nonsense about urination - apparently for some rather low minded people, Tinkle does not refer to Raindrops - as it does in the film - but uncontrollable loss of urine - that is eneuresis. What a shame that such a brilliant artist should be demeaned in this way - English humour at its nadir
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on 22 March 2013
In the days of multiple cameras and manic video editors this is a real treat. you actually get to see the dance without the irritating flashing between cameras. the eye is allowed to dwell on what it chooses not what the editor chooses.
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on 31 May 2016
disc would NOT play on my player! A friend invited me to her home to view video on her computer. I am very disappointed.. DVD did not play on her player either.
All other Jessie Mathews videos play on my TV. Don't know what's the matter with yours.
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on 15 November 2009
Total escape from reality leaving you feeling warm and cheery. Jessie Matthews performs brilliantly. The 'Dancing on the ceiling' scene is exquisite. The clothes are beautiful. More of her films should be released.
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on 21 June 2009
How wonderful to finally have EVERGREEN on DVD. The film is justly a watershed moment not only for the British cinema - but also for the legions of Matthews' fans. Given the fact that Jessie Matthews also starred in the stage play makes this film an invaluable historical document for theatre fans and historians alike. While never a great beauty, Jessie's honest and quite servicable good looks coupled with her unparalleled charm(s) create an effect that far outweighs the workaday beauties of the 1930s. She is charm itself and utterly mesmerizing. (How I wish a rumored stage version of her life had come about featuring Sarah Brightman - Jessie's doppelganger.)

The film deserves a restoration (a la Criterion DVDs) but is still quite watchable, in this version, despite the lack of any noticeable technical improvements. The film is still unequivocally better transferred than the 2-CD JESSIE MATTHEWS: A CENTENARY CELEBRATION - an abysmal effort in every way - and an anthology of music that fans of Jessie Matthews should simply eschew - AT ALL COSTS!
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on 4 June 2010
The last time I watched this movie was on TV ages ago. Bought this DVD and watched it and loved it just as much now as I did back then. Jessie Matthews is very underrated and it's a shame she doesn't get the coverage that she deserves.
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