Monday, February 07, 2011

Movie Review: My Fair Lady

Hollywood's legendary "woman's director", George Cukor (The Women, The Philadelphia Story), transformed Audrey Hepburn into street-urchin-turned-proper-lady Eliza Doolittle in this film version of the Lerner and Loewe musical. Based on George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion, My Fair Lady stars Rex Harrison as linguist Henry Higgins (Harrison also played the role, opposite Julie Andrews, on stage), who draws Eliza into a social experiment that works almost too well. The letterbox edition of this film on video certainly pays tribute to the pageantry of Cukor's set, but it also underscores a certain visual stiffness that can slow viewer enthusiasm just a tad. But it's really star wattage that keeps My Fair Lady exciting--that and such great songs as "On the Street Where You Live" and "I Could Have Danced All Night". Actor Jeremy Brett, who gained a huge following later in life portraying Sherlock Holmes, is quite electric as Eliza's determined suitor.
I may not have read a lot in the previous week, but I did finally watch My Fair Lady. I decided to try and watch more classic films in 2011 and requested a few from the library. This was one of the ones that came in for me this week. I am starting with Audrey Hepburn films, but I did finally watch Casablanca a couple weeks ago. I also have Funny Face and Breakfast at Tiffany's here to watch. I wish they hadn't all came in at the same time because the cc didn't like My Fair Lady and would like a break before we watch another one, but I only have them for a week.

My thoughts on this movie, though. The story was overall fine, but I hate the ending. It didn't really seem like anything was resolved with that ending. After watching a movie of that length I would have liked something a bit more satisfying, but maybe if I watch it again I will think differently. I thought Audrey Hepburn was really good in the movie, though. She suited the part really well. I also love Rex Harrison. He played Professor Higgins perfectly. I enjoyed how he played off everyone in the movie. He was a terrible singer, but I think that was expected to be part of the movies charm. When he sang the song 'Why Can't a Woman be More Like a Man' it opened up some discussion. It was an entertaining song.

Some of the songs in the movie I have heard before, so it was fun to see the movie where they actually came from. I feel like I have seen the movie before, but if I did it was a while ago and I just barely remembered it. It was probably on television at some point and I saw part of it or something. Overall, I did like it and I am glad I watched it, but I still wasn't crazy about how it ended.

What are other people's thoughts on the movie?


  1. If I remember right, the original ending was that she didn't go back. But audiences/producers hated it, so they changed it. *sigh*

    Great music, though. And the scene at the races with all the hats is just priceless.

  2. I love this movie! Seen it a dozen times, at least. I'm glad she goes back. It would have been a bummer if she hadn't, imho.

    {sigh} Breakfast at Tiffany's that is so wonderful, too. Hope you love it. I'm glad you're starting with Audrey Hepburn. While she's not my all time favourite actress, she's up there. And one of the most beautiful women ever, no matter whether she's dressed up or down.

  3. My senior english class watched this and I wasn't impressed, but that could have been because my classmates kept trying to sing the songs...

  4. This is my favorite Hepburn and Harrison movie. Love, love, love it! The King's Speech kind of reminded me of it actually.

  5. Glad you liked it! I love My Fair Lady, although part of my love is down to the fact that I stop it before the end. My advice to you, pretend the film ends after the song she sings where she says she doesn't need Rex Harrison.

  6. I did like this one, I love Audrey. Breakfast at Tiffany's is my favorite. Nice review ;)

  7. Melissa: Yeah, I figured. If she went back, though, they could have handled it differently...

    Nicola: I just watched Funny Face and then we will be watching Breakfast at Tiffany's. :)

    Amanda: You can't do much worse for singing than the people in the movie...

    Tink: I am sad so many people loved it and I was rather bored...

    Jenny: That's a good idea!

    Naida: I am looking forward to Breakfast at Tiffany's. Thanks!


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