Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Mini-Review: How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying

Musicals represent my least-watched genre. With that said, I’m not opposed to watching them at all. For some reason, I just don’t get around to viewing too many. That’s something that I’ve attempted to correct though, as I recently sat down with How to Succeed in Business without Even Trying (1967).

Adapted from the Broadway show, this film takes a look at the office politics/sexual politics of the time. It stars Robert Morse, who reprised his Broadway role, as an up-and-coming window washer with dreams of climbing the corporate ladder. Morse probably seems like an odd choice for today’s audiences. He has an atypical look for a leading man and his performance might be considered a little frenzied. Ultimately though, I think his oddities are what won me over to him. Along with Morse, Michele Lee also stars as a fellow office worker, who immediately falls for the lead. Both stars perform admirably, in singing and dancing numbers.

Overall, the film plays as a solid bit of entertainment, but nothing mind-blowing. Perhaps the reason this doesn’t stand out more is due to how the film is shot. It seems very straightforward in its style – in other words, not as cinematic as it could be. Aside from that, there are many aspects of the film that are commendable. The production design definitely sets the mood of the 60’s – it’s colorful and vibrant. Also, there are some memorable songs, including “Brotherhood of Man” as a particular highlight. As a nice, family-friendly film, I’d say give this one a chance.

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