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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Reaching for the Moon (released in 1930) - Starring Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. and Bebe Daniels

Reaching for the Moon is an American 1930 black and white musical film starring Douglas Fairbanks and Bebe Daniels. This movie had a working title, Lucky Day, which was later changed by the director Edmund Goudling.
Vivian Benton is an amateur aviatrix and a wealthy socialite whose show Aero girls is creating waves in the social circuit. During her felicitation ceremony in a big New York hotel she chances upon Jimmy Carrington who points out the successful broker Larry Day. He is also being toasted by his fellows for his eventful career. Day is a super successful and rich man but very inexperienced in the art of romance. He hardly can bring himself before women and is very reticent. Jimmy wagers with Vivian about hooking up with Day before the end of the felicitation ceremony and Vivian successfully gets her date winning the bet.
Larry Day in anticipation of the romantic interlude, gets dating advice from his valet, Roger. But Vivian who leaves for London where her show is to be opened, calls from the ship breaking up the date. She amuses herself in the process and Larry Day becomes very hurt and vengeful. He and Roger board the same ship to teach Vivian a lesson and to get even. Vivian is traveling to England with her fiancé, Parkington Chempson and Day spend the day wooing her with Roger's able assistance. As the days wean away Vivian thaws and notices Day a lot. Larry Day but falls head over heels in love with Vivian and concentrates all his energies on her.

But trouble is brewing for Day on the professional front as his whole attention is consumed by Vivian. The stock market crashes and he looses a great deal of money. Larry finds himself to be a pauper. But on the last day he confesses his love to Vivian and finds that the whole troop surrounding him. Believing it to be one of Vivian's practical joke Larry believes that he has lost his fortune and the girl, retires a heart broken man. But Vivian as she docks at her destination, tells him that she loves him and is ready to be his wife even if it means being poor.
This sweet romantic comedy has Douglas Fairbanks making a rare appearance in a talking picture. His portrayal of Larry Day is markedly different from the swashbuckling hero's he has played during his silent film days. But an actor once is an actor forever and Fairbanks gives a measured and mature performance with out his trade mark over the top style and his dialogue delivery is impeccable. Another notable mention is the sound track of the movie which involves the famous song “when the folks high-up do the mean low-down” sung by Bing Cosby and the chorus.
This movie was meant to be 90 minutes long, but later was cut to 74 minutes. The Spanish version of the movie is called Para alcanzar la Luna. This movie was a moderate box office success and currently a favorite of the DVD circuit.
A good movie to watch.

Reaching for the Moon (released in 1930) - Starring Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. and Bebe Daniels

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