Friday, January 14, 2011

"San Francisco" by Jeanette MacDonald

Today we mark the passing - on this day in 1965 - of movie songstress Jeanette MacDonald, whose semi-operatic warblings (often opposite Maurice Chevalier or, more famously, Nelson Eddy) graced many a movie during her nearly forty year career...

One such film for which she was rightly acclaimed was the 1936 classic San Francisco, directed by WS 'Woody' Van Dyke and centered around the events of the April 1906 earthquake which devastated that city. Co-starring both Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy, the clip shown here - of her singing the film's iconic title song - is as it appeared after undergoing the colorization process by order of Ted Turner in the 1980s; while I am not normally a fan of the process* in this instance I think it gives the proceedings the look of the era's hand-tinted postcards and the like.

*Which so offended the culturati - and rightly so - that it led to the creation of the National Film Registry, to preserve the work of filmmakers from any future ruination of the sort...
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