Top critical review
27 people found this helpful
on 26 July 2005
This is a strange film in many ways. It's basically a vehicle for Julie Andrews, and she sings about 15 songs in it.
The film is a biopic of Gertrude Lawrence, the musical star (and hence the excuse for Julie singing lots of songs), so it's not really a "musical" as we'd think of it - all the songs are sung in the context of being on a stage etc.
The good bits - Julie sings wonderfully, as usual, particularly on "Dear Little Boy", and "Someone to watch over me", and is downright spectacular on "My Ship". There are some great set pieces throughout the film and as the soundtrack is no longer available on CD (and was never digitally remastered anyway), this is the only place to hear the music, written by some of the best writers of the 20th century.
The bad bits - the story is pretty boring and serves only to link together the songs (about 18 in total). Some of the acting is fairly awful (the badminton scene springs to mind) and it's all a bit superficial.
So in conclusion, the story would get 1 and the songs 5 so I've given it a 3. Watch it once, then fast forward to the songs in future (thankfully the DVD chapters line up with the songs, so this is easy to do).
Extras - I've got the USA version which came out last year, so I don't know if the Region 2 version will have more, but there are some nice documentaries and commentary.