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4.4 out of 5 stars19
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 24 March 2015
A definite buy - not to be missed

The films range from March 1930, August 1933, September 1935 and August 1937, and give an interesting insight of British entertainment at the time. Many of the stars moved on from singing and dancing as the amount of continued training for this is rigorous, so this is an opportunity not to be missed.
The earliest "Harmony Heaven", directed by Thomas Bentley, who had previously progressed from a Vaudeville performer to directing films in the early twenties, It gets off to a "flying start" after the titles and is very competently edited. It benefits from some excellent and well orchestrated numbers written by Edward Brandt and Eddie Pola. Polly Ward, the leading lady, came from a theatrical family, and was only twenty when this film was made. Her dancing and singing are perfect. The other actors are good and the dancing is spot on. A piece of advice at the beginning of the film is to standby with your finger on the volume control as the sound level can be variable, particularly during the "Raggity Romp" number This was the second British Musical to be made and the newly created sound engineers were still getting used to the medium. During this number watch out for the invalids being pushed around in bath chairs by nurses. Ken Russell used this idea in the Boy Friend number "its never too late to fall in love. The sound system used was the RKO Photophone sound system. The film is 57 minutes long, but it appears that it was originally 61 minutes, because four minutes of colour made with the Pathecolour hand tinted system was omitted from our copy.
The second film ,the song that you gave me, stars Bebe Daniels, who was a very competent singer and actoress having made her first stage appearance at the age of four. She had appeared as the lead in the film Rio Rita only a few years earlier. The song in the film ," the song that you gave me" , was reputed to have been written by Noel Gay, who it has been said was Britain's answer to Irving Berlin.
The third film "Music hath charms" is a vehicle for the talented musician and band leader Henry Hall. The supervising director was Thomas Bentley and he does a good job in knitting the film together. Henry Hall was a frequent broadcaster on radio with his band until his retirement in 1964. He used to announce himself as "this IS Henry Hall speaking" This was not self adulation as claimed in a letter by a lady to him in the early 1960s but dates back to a broadcast in the Strand when a German bomb fell one block away from the studio. He replayed the short introduction to this show and when he was about to say "IS", you could hear the enormous bang making him emphasize the" IS" . Thereafter he kept this style of introduction as a mark of defiance to the German War machine.
" Over she goes" is a very bubbly and entertaining light musical with some good numbers.
In all this is a good volume -- Thank you Network.
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on 27 December 2013
This DVD set is a must for movie buffs who love the early musicals. .Many of the catchy tunes in these movies will never be available on CD and the idea of releasing these little gems on DVD is a revelation. The quality is good, the price is right, and I look forward to Vol 2. I'm also hoping that a very entertaining British musical called " Music Hall " (1934) will be included in this wonderful series,starring the very popular DeBroy Somers Band..

G Herbert
New Zealand.
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on 30 November 2013
Great to see old British movies revived again, in such good quality prints
If you are into old British movies you'll love it..if not then....well!!, but remember these were the films of the day and should not be dismissed...bring on more volumes
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on 17 April 2014
You get four films here for the price of one. The quality is a little variable but the entertainment value is top class. I cannot wait for Volume 2 to come out.
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on 29 November 2013
All the films have been restored to a high standard. The one I least enjoyed was the H Hall picture, his name being mentioned in nearly every frame,however his music is still delightful to listen to.
The other films are all different in style and content with some great dance routines and musical content.
A nice change,with a pace easy on the eyes and ears.
Most enjoyable,and a relaxing way to relish the great days at British International Pictures.
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on 25 August 2015
These musicals sound and look as good as they can I should think: clearly a lot of care has been lavished on them, and the result is much more than worthwhile. Over She Goes is great fun with some instantly memorable Billy Mayerl songs and amusing performances, even if some of the dialogue and routines inevitable now seem dated! Harmony Heaven, released in 1930, must be the first or one of the first British musical sound films. Nearly all the 57 minutes is music and, even if the sound quality varies wildly throughout, the film is highly entertaining. Music Hath Charms, starring Henry Hall and the BBC Dance Orchestra is wonderful: lots of catchy songs and inventive direction. A marvellous wallow in nostalgia!!
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on 26 August 2014
Totally delightful! My favorites are OVER SHE GOES and MUSIC HATH CHARMS.

Really enjoy the delightful Stanley Lupino, Laddie Cliff and Henry Hall!
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on 26 December 2013
I am always interested in British musicals of the 1930/40 period. This dvd gives variety and the Henry Hall band a chance to shine.
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on 9 April 2014
A very good DVD; as a BBC man I found the musical, "Music Hath Charms" interesting from the point of broadcasting history. Also, the views of Broadcasting House London and the Langham Hotel, - at one time a BBC building - were of great interest to me, as I worked for a time in both these buildings.

The plot of the film was rather trite, but no matter, it still remains an important milestone in cinema history. Space does not permit analysis of the other films featured, but I would recommend this DVD to anyone.

John Harman
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on 7 March 2016
again musicals haven't moved that much further for effects in view of digital and all else that is available today.
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