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Deanna Durbin - Christmas Holiday [DVD] 
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A very grown up Deanna Durbin gives a bravura performance as a sleazy nightclub singer in this intense Film Noir Hollywood classic. An army lieutenant (Dean Harens), recently jilted by his fiancée, finds himself introduced to a New Orleans bordello by a drinking companion. Here he meets singer Jackie Lamont (Deanna Durbin) - a woman with a dark past and an even darker secret... Her real name is Abigail Manette and her husband, Robert Manette (Gene Kelly), is a convicted murderer serving life in prison - or so she believes. Unknown to her, Robert has broken out of jail and is intent on tracking her down. He's consumed with jealousy, obsessed with the idea she's been unfaithful to him - and has already decided that the hapless army lieutenant is really her secret lover... A rare opportunity to see Deanna Durbin truly excel in an unusual and demanding role, CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY features her singing 'Spring Will Be a Little Late This Year' and the Berlin classic 'Always'.
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Top Customer Reviews
Nice DVD transfer too...special features only include a stills gallery, still, there are some nice shots here. Highly recommended film.
Charlie takes Jackie to a Christmas Mass at the local cathedral: she becomes upset and she pours out her heart to him. It seems her real name is Abigail Mannette, wife of convicted killer Robert Mannette (Gene Kelly). The couple live with his mother, who knows all about her son’s failings, for Robert is also a compulsive gambler and steals money from his mother.
This is a fine example of the genre and I would recommend viewing, quite apart from the pleasure of seeing Kelly and Durbin in dramatic roles.
The title is a bit of a bum steer, the presence of Durbin and Kelly a splendid slice of red herring casting, and the written notices on the internet announce that the source material was watered down for this filmic adaptation. All of these instances mark Siodmak's film out as a fascinating oddity, and certainly of high interest to film noir lovers.
Plot essentially has Durbin telling Harens in flashback how her life crumbled around her when she married Kelly. She thought he was a wealthy gent full of charm and love, but soon she comes to realise that he's a rascal with underlying issues, not helped by his mother, a witch like Sondergaard.
Had Siodmak been able to go full tilt with the characterisations here, we would have most likely been privy to one of his finest dark noirs, he was after all one of the great purveyors of such devilish delights. Yet even though there's a frustration that some of the bolder elements of Maugham's prose are not overtly evident, there's still a dark heart beating away, with suggestions of prostitution, incest and homosexuality dangling in the air, baiting those who in the classic eras adhered to censorship.
Siodmak and Bredell don't over saturate via noir filters, but as the story moves between seedy New Orleans clubs and Gothic churches, the sense of everything being out of sorts is amplified by smoke and lighting techniques.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Well played - but a dark tale. Not the typical DD movie. Timely delivery.Published 17 months ago by Amazon Buyer
It's an oldie, but a good film to sit and watch time time again, wot ever age group you are.Published on 28 Jan. 2014 by Vans
Dad loved it brought back old memories. Thank you very much. and thank you for deliverying it so quick. GreatPublished on 24 Jan. 2014 by fan
Fine subtle performance from Deanna Durbin, especially in her wisecracking 'Jackie' mode in this mix of melodrama and noir. Read morePublished on 17 Nov. 2013 by Mario