“Hollywood Revue of 1929″ and “It’s a Great Life” on DVD
Two films from Ann Dvorak’s days as a hoofer at M-G-M are now available on DVD, courtesy of the Warner Archive.
I’ve discussed Hollywood Revue of 1929 previously on this site, which is a star studded wreck of an early talkie, and yet oddly mesmerizing. For Ann Dvorak fans, this film is a must see as the 17-year-old smiles big and dances her heart out in many of the movie’s musical numbers. Plus, she gets two words of dialog and slaps Jack Benny.
I have never seen It’s a Great Life in it’s entirety, so I am excited about this one. The film stars vaudeville darlings Vivian and Rosetta Duncan, popularly known as the Duncan Sisters in what is their only sound film. Production on this one started a couple of days after Ann Dvorak’s 18th birthday, right around the time she was elevated to the position of assistant choreographer to Sammy Lee. Ann is especially prominent in a number called “The Hoosier Hop,” a dance step she supposedly came up with, and she sure does she beam with pride while performing it.
I’ll be wishing myself a Merry X-Mas with these two, and look forward to more of Ann’s M-G-M’s flicks to be made available from the Warner Archive.