Fall 2005 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Managing Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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DVD Review

Three Coins in the Fountain  
Music composed by Victor Young
20th Century Fox (1954)
Directed by Jean Negulesco
Song: Three Coins in the Fountain - music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Sammy Cahn
Starring: Clifton Webb, Dorothy McGuire, Louis Jordan, Maggie McNamara, Jean  Peters and Rossano Brazzi
  Available on 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment Studio Classics F1-SGB 0103201009
Running Time: ? minutes
Amazon UK   Amazon US

An enormous box office hit, and Oscar-nominated for Best Film, this romantic comedy, filmed in Rome and Venice (Milton Krasner won an Academy Award for his luminous colour photography) is mostly remembered for its Oscar-winning title song. But Victor Young’s high-spirited and joyous score that blended in with the Italian locale and the story is very7 attractive. Because this score, for some copyright difficulty, or so I understand, cannot be made available on CD, I have chosen to draw your attention to this DVD from the collection of 20th Century Fox classics now currently being released at often bargain prices on DVD. (Another Fox release, Peyton Place, with a significant score by Franz Waxman is also reviewed on Film Music on the Web this month).

The film’s story line is rather silly. It concerns the romances of three American secretaries working in Rome. The romance between the Rossano Brazzi character (with Brazzi hopelessly miscast and looking miserably uncomfortable all the time and a wasted Jean Peters) is not worth your time, the slightly scatter-brained Maggie McNamara pursuit of Louis Jordan’s Prince has its moments but it is left to the grace of Dorothy McGuire and the wonderfully sarcastic aphorisms of Clifton Web  as the imperious novelist to save the films. Who could forget such wonderful lines as this:-

[At a cocktail party]  Lady guest to Webb. “My husband says that one has only to follow me around with a pencil to get plenty of material for a novel.”  Web in reply: “My dear lady, I would love to get behind you with a pencil.”

A memorable title song and a charming score by Victor Young – both together only available on DVD.

Ian Lace


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