Adelaide Advertiser (03/Jun/1935) - "Blue Danube" in Majestic Film
- article: "Blue Danube" in Majestic Film
- newspaper: Adelaide Advertiser (03/Jun/1935)
- keywords: Alfred Hitchcock, Edmund Gwenn, Edna Best, Esmond Knight, Fay Compton, Jessie Matthews, Leslie Banks, Nova Pilbeam, St. Moritz, Switzerland, The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934), Waltzes from Vienna (1934)
"BLUE DANUBE" IN MAJESTIC FILM
Tense Thriller In Support
Considering the wealth of material at his hand, Alfred Hitchcock has made disappointingly little use of the Strauss waltzses and the glamor of old Vienna in "Waltzes from Vienna," which is at the Majestic. There is too much bakehouse and too little music. This is not to say there are not some good scenes in the picture. There are several, the "Blue Danube" climax being particularly good. Jessie Matthews is the star, but she is not particularly happily cast as Best, and has little scope for those talents exploited In "Good Companions" and her later pictures. She gives every promise of providing Strauss junior with a zealous virago for a wife, but perhaps the young noodle deserves it, for he seems unable to make up his mind whether he wishes to be a baker or a musician.
Fay Compton steals the picture as the Duchess, a delightful piece of work, in which coquetry and honesty are cleverly blended. Esmond Knight as Schani Strauss looks too much of a musician to be a baker, and Edmund Gwenn as Strauss senior adds another to a long list of excellent characters.
"The Man Who Knew Too Much," the support, is a genuine thriller directed with the slickness and deft touches which grip you throughput and occasionally produce real excitement. Every pocket seems to sprout a pistol, and what with plots and counter plots, kidnapping, hand-to-band affrays In a bogus chapel, and a miniature siege, the cast boasts as complete a list of villains as have been gathered together. There is a particularly gripping climax, an attempted assassination of a foreign diplomat during a concert in Albert Hull, in which the action is deliberately retarded to accentuate the tension of the bidden revolver being slowly trained on the victim. The shot and the scream come as a real relief.
Leslie Banks and Edna Best make a welcome return as husband and wife, unwittingly drawn into the meshes of a foreign conspiracy while on a visit to St. Moritz. Both act surely and capably, and Nova Pilbeam, as the kidnapped child, shows the same strange charm which distinguished her in "Little Friend." Half a dozen of the villains do exceedingly well, and even to the minor characters the cast is practically faultless.
The gazettes are good. In one the Prince of Wales gives his first microphone Interview on behalf of the King's Jubilee Fund.