Gold Diggers of 1933

Film , Drama
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Second of the archetypal backstage musicals from Warners (it followed hard on the success of 42nd Street) which established the idiosyncratic geometrics of Busby Berkeley. Some semblance of a plot (songwriter Powell turns against his wealthy parents in wishing to marry chorus girl Keeler), and much Depression wisecracking from Blondell, MacMahon and Rogers; but most notable is the vulgar, absurd and wonderfully surreal Berkeley choreography. Great numbers: Ginger Rogers adorned in dollars singing 'We're in the Money'; young lovers interrupted by rain while 'Pettin' in the Park'; and on a strangely bleak note, the files of unemployed ex-servicemen during 'Remember My Forgotten Man'. Delirious and delightful.

Release details

Duration: 96 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Screenwriter: Erwin Gelsey, James Seymour
Cast: Warren William
Joan Blondell
Aline MacMahon
Ruby Keeler
Dick Powell
Ginger Rogers
Ned Sparks
Guy Kibbee
1 person listening

Digging in the crates here (no pun intended), this is a deliriously entertaining pre-code musical featuring an early appearance from Ginger Rogers.  Typically incredible Busby Berkeley choreography (including "We're In the Money" which you may just know), a whipsmart, near the knuckle script with women fully in charge and it's largely a film that feels fresh and current today despite being the best part of 90 years old.