BIG POND, THE (1930, USA)
directed by: Hobart Henley

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IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0020690

Submitted by Charles O'Brien on 2006-07-17

Charles O'Brien's comment:
A Chevalier vehicle along the lines of the Lubitsch productions of the time (also produced by Paramount), though The Big Pond has a mainly American setting. The film features the theme "If a Nightingale Could Sing Like You..." which, in one form or another, plays at least six times during the film. Note, too, that the same tune is heard numerous times in Monkey Business, in which it is sung by each of the Marx Brothers, who impersonate Chevalier so as to sneak through U.S. customs in NY. The tune is first heard in The Big Pond during the credits, and then again at 2.20, when Philippe (Maurice) sings it to his American girlfriend Babs (Claudette Colbert); 9.00: Babs is forbidden by her curmudgeon father from marrying Philippe; 15.20: Dad offers a job in his chewing-gum factory to Philippe, thus giving Philippe a chance to prove his worthiness as a husband for Babs; 16.20: Philippe again sings "If a Nightingale..." to Babs, with the music continuing as underscoring for several minutes after the singing has stopped; 26.40: the American guests at dinner behave rudely, thus putting Frenchman Philippe to the test (can he handle life in rough-and-tumble America?); Philippe gets phone call from Babs; Philippe's first day of work at the chewing-gum factory; Philippe and Dad; 36.50: "If a Nightingale..." is played at the party by a dance band, and is interrupted by the scene in Philippe's room, where the little neighbor girl sings him to sleep with a lullabye; 41.00: Babs calls from party, looking for Philippe, who had promised to come; 41.50: back at the party the band plays a tune whose melody is similar to that of "If a Nightingale..."; 46.30: the next day Babs calls Philippe at work; Philippe gets blamed by the boss for a stash of liquor, and then comes up with a brilliant business idea: liquor-flavored chewing gum!; 53.05: chewing-gum montage; Philippe in his new office (note the direct-recorded typewriter sounds); business dinner, with Philippe leading the toasts; 56.50: the song "I'm So Lucky" continues until 59.50; Philippe dictates a letter referring to his astonishing success in American business, just as Babs arrives to complain that he spends too much time thinking about work; an organ grinder plays "If a Nightingale..." and Philippe hums along; 63.10: Philippe again hums the tune's melody; Philippe re-writes the tune's words so that it can serve as an advertising jingle for chewing gum; 65.10: Philippe gets pay raise from Dad, but Babs rejects him because he has lost his continental charm by becoming a typical American businessman; Babs spurns Philippe in favor of American rival Ronny; Philippe and little neighbor girl Jenny; Philippe rescues Babs from Ronny, whisking her off by boat to a life together.


Name:
story
song
exp.tit
Number of shots:
302
53
1
Length(min):
61.03
15.77
0.06
ASL(sec):
12.1
17.8
3.8
MSL 7.5 11.4 3.8
MSL/ASL
0.62
0.64
1
StDev 16.8 22.7 0
Min 0.2 1.6 3.8
Max 162.9 147.8 3.8
CV 1.38 1.27 0
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