Tag: Rodgers & Hart

They’re singing my song

10-musicals-that-dont-suck-20090921073227172

It’s no secret around these parts that I love a good musical. Emphasis on both the “good” and the “musical” part. If you let me, I’ll give you an hour long dissertation on why John Cameron Mitchell’s “Hedvig and the Angry Inch” is way better than “The Sound of Music” which is, however, way better than Pauline Kael said it was and why Rogers & Hart songs are much better than Rogers & Hammerstein songs but that I still like “The King and I” and, yes, “Flower Drum Song.” Then, we’ll move on to MGM and the Freed Unit.

In fact, coincidentally, my last post here last night was also about musicals. I’m also actually angry at the place where I got the picture¬† from above (it’s linked) because it’s from a “10 Musicals That Don’t Suck Piece” which fails to include any movies older than “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and therefore implies that all musicals made prior to 1974 suck, especially “West Side Story.” So “The Bandwagon” and “Singin’ in the Rain” suck also, I guess. That really sucks.

So, if there was one thing possible to distract me from the current almost-everyone-is-somewhat-or-very-or-incredibly-wrong clusterfrack in our nation’s politics at the moment (and I’m incredibly glad I’m not a political blogger these days), it has arrived. The Hollywood Reporter (via Monika Bartyzel) reports that the “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs” duo, Phil Lord and Chris Miller, are in negotiations to direct a project I’d either never heard of before or forgot all about, “Bob: The Musical.” The music will be the very talented composer Marc Shaiman, whose fingerprints are on countless film scores and everything from “Hairspray” to “South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut.”

If you’re wondering what the big deal is and you’re not one of my three known regular readers (for some mysterious reason, all of their initials are “R.R.” — okay, two of them are brothers, so there’s that), look up at those tiny red letters near the title of this post and that’s all you’ll need to know. All I’m saying is, assuming this ever gets made, it’d better be good. Yes, I know “Bob” is a common name, but since I already have to live with “What About Bob?,” this better be at least as good as that decent comedy was. Good or bad, I’m going to have to deal with jokes about it until I die.

And now a great moment from my favorite previously made Bob-themed musical film.

“My Funny Valentine” is for everyone (updated)

I don’t think there’s any doubt that Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart’s standard is clearly among the very best pure love songs ever written. Below are two movie performances of “My Funny Valentine” from people we don’t ordinarily think of as musical performers.

From the 1957 film version of “Pal Joey,” below Kim Novak (“Vertigo“) mesmerizes Frank Sinatra as a worried Rita Hayworth steps in.

Those vocals were actually supplied by singer Trudy Erwin. Matt Damon, however, supplies his own voice for a very not-bad version from 1999’s terrific “The Talented Mr. Ripley.”

The Damon/Guy Barker Quartet version of the Rodgers & Hart masterpiece is somewhat inspired by Chet Baker’s classic recording of the tune, which you can hear here.

UPDATE: Roger Ebert takes a slightly similar tack. Great minds think alike, or something.

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