...BACK from GingerFest 2018!!!

...of course it was a BLAST! A great time meeting fellow Gingerologists and discussing Ginger with... well, other Gingerologists!!! Marge and Gene Padgitt did an incredible job with the proceedings, lined up awesome speakers, and of course Roberta was incredible as well!!! Hope to see y'all there next year!!!

This Day in GINGEROLOGY - July 21st

1973: Ginger is on the panel of judges in the Miss Universe contest, held in Athens, Greece; Miss Philippines Margarita Moran won.

1975: Billy West (born Roy B. Weissburg), who starred with Ginger in the films “Gold Diggers of 1933” (as Medal Winner in ‘Remember My Forgotten Man’ Number), and “Twenty Million Sweethearts” (as Bellboy), died in Hollywood, California, at the age of 82.

2010: TCM aired “Perfect Strangers”.

2015: TCM aired “Star of Midnight”.

2017: TCM aired “Lucky Partners”.


Next GingerFilm(s) (on TCM - all times Eastern):

July 22, 2018 @ 6:30 A.M. Fifth Avenue Girl
July 27, 2018 @ 9:30 A.M. Roberta

Next GingerFilm(s) (on FXM Retro - all times Eastern) - NOTE - the FXM Retro site is kinda 'cryptic' as far as specific times, so please check local listings for 'specific times':

...No Films Scheduled...


Sunday, January 8, 2012

Ginger Rogers Film Review #19 - Flying Down to Rio

(December 29, 1933 - RKO Radio Pictures) 
Run Time (approximate): 89 Minutes 
Directed by: Thornton Freeland. 
Associate Director: George Nicholls, Jr.
Executive Producer: Merian C. Cooper. 
Associate Producer: Louis Brock.
Screenplay: Cyril Hume, H.W. Haneman and Erwin Gelsey; Adele Comandini (uncredited), Joseph Fields (uncredited), Thomas Lennon (uncredited), Fred Niblo Jr. (uncredited), Gilberto Souto (uncredited), and Harvey F. Thew (uncredited).
Based on a Play by: Anne Caldwell. 
Based on an Original Story by: Lou Brock.
Photography by: J. Roy Hunt. 
Art Directors: Van Nest Polglase and Carroll Clark. 
Editor: Jack Kitchin.
Dances by: Dave Gould.
Sound Recorder: P.J. Faulkner, Jr..
Musical Director: Max Steiner. 
Music Recorder: Murray Spivack. 
Miniatures: Don Jahraus. 
Costumer: Walter Plunkett and Irene (uncredited).
Makeup Artist: Mel Berns.
Research Director: Elizabeth McGaffey.
Special Photographic Effects: Vernon Walker.
Still Photographer: John Miehle.
Also Starring: Dolores del Rio (as Belinha De Rezende), Gene Raymond (as Roger Bond), Raul Roulien (as Julio Ribeiro), Fred Astaire (as Fred Ayres), Blanche Friderici (as Dona Elena de Rezende), Walter Walker (as Senor Carlos de Rezende), Etta Moten (as The Carioca Singer), Roy D'Arcy (as Greek Gambling Syndicate Member), Maurice Black (as Greek Gambling Syndicate Member), Armand Kaliz (as Greek Gambling Syndicate Member), Paul Porcasi (as The Mayor), Reginald Barlow (as Alfredo Vianna, Banker), Eric Blore (as Mr. Butterbass, Assistant Hotel Manager).
UNCREDITED CAST: Luis Alberni (as Rio Casino Manager), Rafael Alvir (as Man), Alyce Ardell (as Maid), Carmen Bailey (as Dancer), Don 'Red' Barry (as Dancer), Leon Beaumon (as Yankee Clipper), Eddie Boland (as Airplane Mechanic), Eddie Borden (as Eddie, Yankee Clipper), Harry Bowen (as Airport Mechanic), Sidney Bracey (as Rodrigues, the Chauffeur), Mary Bracken (as Dancer), The Brazilian Turunas (as Musical Ensemble), Lucile Browne (as Belinha's Friend), Alex Chivra (as Waiter), Helen Collins (as Dancer), Ray Cooke (as Yankee Clipper Banjo Player), Gino Corrado (as Messenger), Sue Curtis (as Dancer), Grace Davies (as Dancer), Henry De Silva (as Waiter), Amapola Del Vando (as Dancer), Armand Delmar (as Dancer), Joe Dominguez (as Waiter), Juan Duval (as Dancer), John Eberts (as Waiter), Celeste Edwards (as Dancer), Emilio Fernandez (as Dancer), Betty Furness (as Belinha's Friend), Vina Gale (as Dancer), Jack Gargan (as Yankee Clipper), Alice Gentle (as Singer in 'Carioca' number), Jack Good (as Yankee Clipper), Margaret Harding (as Dancer), Pauline High (as Dancer), Shep Houghton (as Dancer), Grace Walston Jester (as Dancer), Harvey Karels (as Dancer), Mary Kornman (as Belinha's Friend), Martha La Venture (as Dancer), Perc Launders (as Yankee Clipper), Wallace MacDonald (as Airplane Pilot), Francisco Maran (as Waiter), Helen McAllister (as Dancer), Rex Moore (as Dancer), Laura Morse (as Dancer), Edmund Mortimer (as Nightclub Patron), Movita (as Singer in 'Carioca' number), Clarence Muse (as Caddy in Haiti), Margaret Nearing (as Dancer), Franklin Pangborn (as Hammerstein, Hotel Manager), Manuel Paris (as Man at Aviator's Club), Pedro Regas (as Waiter), Jack Rice (as Yankee Clipper), Ruth Riley (as Dancer), Julian Rivero (as Antonio, Billboard Worker), Gladyce Roberts (as Dancer), Adrian Rosley (as Hotel Atlantico Manager), Audry Savage (as Dancer on Wing), Ruby Jo Savage (as Dancer on Wing), Harry Semels (as Billboard Worker), Barbara Sheldon (as Dancer), Marla Shelton (as Dancer), Mary Stewart (as Dancer/Singer), Jerome Storm (as Dancer), Eddie Tamblyn (as Yankee Clipper), Carol Tevis (as Blindfolded Blonde), Doris Toddings (as Dancer), Alma Travers (as Dancer), Joe Venuti (as Violinist in Orchestra), Dick Webster (as Band Member), Douglas Williams (as Yankee Clipper), Howard Wilson (as Yankee Clipper), and Dorothy Young (as Dancer).           
Ginger's Character: Honey Hale. 
Ginger's 'Screen Time': Approximately 11 Minutes and 0 Seconds (12.4% of the film).
GingerTunes: "Music Makes Me".
Gingery Goodness Factor (GGF) - (1-10): 8.5 - Ginger is interspersed throughout the film quite nicely...and overall Miss Hale is not overtly sassy, but enough to stand out. She also has some truly funny lines...such as 'Noodle in a Haystack', which is the title of Amanda Cooper's awesome blog... she explains her reasoning for the title HERE (scroll to the bottom)...
Film Quality (1-10): 9.0 - As one of the 'BigTen' of the GandF series, it's been pretty well restored...no issues with sound or film quality.
Huey's Review for GINGEROLOGY:   Of course, we all know of Rio's place in cinematic history, and how it was the genesis of the greatest dance duo to ever be captured on film... but putting that invaluable facet aside for a bit, Flying Down to Rio is really a pretty neat little movie.
The film basically follows that now famous swing band The Yankee Clippers and their gigs from Miami to Rio... and the love triangle that develops along the way.
The leader of this ensemble, Roger Bond (Gene Raymond), is quite the hit with the ladies in the crowd...(were these ladies referred to as 'groupies' back then?) to the point of compromising the band's standing with their employers. 
Their current gig in a Miami hotel is under the scrutiny of the new hotel manager, Hammerstein (Franklin Pangborn) and his assistant, Mr. Butterbass (really?) (Eric Blore)...  their mantra for the employees is 'no fraternizing with the guests'; of course, RB invariably rips that rule to shreds as he falls like a boat anchor for the stunning Miss Belinha De Rezende (Delores Del Rio), and effectively lands the Clippers (when did they become the L.A. Clippers, anyway?) on the streets, despite the warnings of his lead accordion player, Fred Ayres (Fred Astaire - not much thought went into Fred's character's name, eh? The Astaire name was pretty popular at the time, so they tried to make the character name as close as possible, it appears...).
Well, RB makes amends, as he hooks the band up with a gig to open a new hotel in Rio, where he has a fellow bandleader bud involved in the opening, Julio Ribeiro (Raul Roulien). As RB is making plans to 'fly down to Rio', as it were, he finds out that Ms. Belinha (henceforth, let's call her 'Ms.B' for short, shall we?) is headed that way as well... of course, RB is also a professional pilot of some type, and offers up a ride to Ms.B back to Rio (Nancy Grace apparently wasn't around back then to warn of airplane rides with strange dudes...). 
Of course, RB effectively 'runs out of gas' (which is most likely a LOT harder to calculate for a plane than in a car...)  such that he and Ms.B get to do the 'deserted island' thing, for one night, anyway. That's where they fall well into love, although both play it rather cool...but there's a catch (natch)... Ms.B is already spoken for back in Brazil...and, wouldn't ya know it, the dude just HAPPENS to be Julio, RB's band bud from way back when.
Well, this is where I'll leave the 'love' angle of the story for you to discover; in the meantime, Fred and the songbird of the group, Miss Honey Hale (truly one of the top 5 Ginger character names EV-AH) are working behind the scenes to keep the band's gig alive, as there are Greek Mafia Dudes that are trying to strongarm the hotel owner into selling, thus wanting the hotel opening to flop... ultimately, to circumvent the fact that a 'performance permit' wasn't obtained for the show, the flyboys (yeah, Julio is a pilot as well...how convenient!) come up with the wild idea of strapping scantily-clad hoofers on the wings of their biplanes... now, as an engineer, Huey has several issues with this, besides the fact that it would be purt near (there's that word again) suicide to hang out on a wing of an airplane in action, unless you're a gremlin of some sort...not to mention these planes were meant to have two passengers, tops...so how can you get the thing airborne with 12-14 dames hanging all over it? Not that I'm complaining about the scene... it's DEFINITELY an intense study in 'Pre-Hays Code' provocativeness...  
And of course, the wild aerial burlesque show works (was there ever any doubt?), and the masses who witness it give all their money and resources to the new hotel, thus effectively ousting the thug dudes... the final scene is so cool, as Fred and Honey are sipping champagne (well, 'ginger ale' for Honey, of course...:-] ) and checking out the proceedings in the sky via binoculars... this final scene also hints at Ginger and Fred's beautiful friendship to follow over the next 6 or so years... thus that much more awesome. 

Favorite Ginger Moments: Of course, the Carioca routine is the start of something pretty dang incredible, but for pure Gingeryness, her solo of 'Music Makes Me' is hard to beat... here's the video of it:
And on to the screen caps...with the 'disclaimer' that the caps for 'Music Makes Me' and 'The Carioca' are VERY abbreviated... these will be on 'separate posts', a la "Did You Ever See a Dream Walking?"...it appears all future GandF routines will be handled in this manner, in order to keep the 'general pics' for the main review manageable... OK, off we go, with the 'aeronautical' theme played throughout the caps, as this IS FLYING Down to Rio, after all...
  "...We simply do not have ANY of you people on the flight list... Who ARE you people, anyway? And WHERE did you purchase your tickets from?"

 "It was from Expedoicity.com... you know, the one where Billy Shatner dresses up like a gnome?"

 "Hey, maybe we can hitchhike from Miami to Rio... once you're over the Canal in Panama, it's all mountainous Colombian roads to Brazil...those aren't too bad, are they?"

Ginger warming up for Music Makes Me... the video clip is above, so I'll just add a few of my fave caps...

 ...stay tuned for MUCHO more caps for this number in a future post...

"So, First Class AND Second Class were already booked... Coach is still a bit steep...so, what's left...Economy? is that the same as 'Steerage'?"

"Well, as long as I can reach Rio by next Tuesday...dang, couldn't we have found a gig in Pensacola or something?"

"Welcome to the Treetop Lounge...we hope you will enjoy your layover here in Bogota... the motif is designed to emulate the vast expanse of the region's rain forests...the natural resources from within these areas will never be depleted..." 

 "Now, please relax and observe our high-tech staff of baggage handlers, who will flawlessly transfer your luggage to your connecting flight..."

  "...'High-tech', my foot...Last time I was down here they somehow 'misplaced' some of my luggage...imagine that...it ended up on a turntable in Cairo..."

  "Yes...they are the finest in the business, my friends..."

 "...oh, by the way, sorry to bother you with this issue, Mr. Astair...er, Ayres, but..."

"...it seems that some of your luggage has been inadvertently re-routed to a place called 'Hawaii'...".


 "I'm FINE, sir! How are YOU?"

 "...Hawaii, eh? Well, at least your stuff's in the same hemisphere this time, Freddie..." 

 "...speaking of luggage, Freddie, I'm trying to remember if I 'checked' mine properly out of Miami..."

  "I talked to the fellow at the counter...'Maurice', I believe it was..."

 "It seemed like he just threw them over in the corner...I never saw ANY tags go on 'em..."

  "...aren't those YOUR skivvies strewn out there on the conveyor, Honey?"

"...oh, well, what-EVAH...let's dance!!!"

 ...Ginger and Fred's first few 'filmed' steps together as a 'team'...a watershed moment, to say the VERY least...

  ...Ginger just looks wickedawesome in this one, like she's about to pirouette into oblivion...

  ...is this the foxtrot? A fox is trotting, I can tell y'all THAT much... and Ginger doesn't look too bad, either! (bah-dum-dah)  :-]

  ...The Big Finale...I just like how Ginger's dress is unfurled in this cap...

  "...So you're telling me you departed from Miami at 6:30 A.M., transferred in Port-Au-Prince at 9:15, then arrived in Rio at 4:30 P.M.? Without ONE delay?"

  "Honey, this guy is nothing but a jive turkey... don't speak to him unless he owes you money..."

  "...Freddie...don't look now, but...that dude that just passed by, over your right shoulder...he's like, twice as big as you! He's all out of proportion with the rest of us...is that common in Brazil?"

  "Ah, folks and varmints are all various sizes down here... bugs here are the size of toasters...in fact, they have a whole species of 'em down here CALLED 'Toaster Bugs'..."

  "Of course, the Brazil nut is the perfect example...look at how large it is compared to the standard American peanut...or even walnut, for that matter..."

  "These cookies seem pretty normal...but they may in actuality be "Brazil-enlarged" oyster crackers..."

  "...so, we're going to strap a bunch of scantily-clad dames on these decrepit biplanes and fly around trying to get everyone to notice them... it just seems...RIGHT, y'know?"

  There's a plane and an automobile... strangely enough, no trains made an appearance in this flick...well, Ginger is about to throw the switch of the 'Pain Train' on an unsuspecting ditz, as you shall see below...

  "OK, ladies...remember, Brazilians will be watching this show, so let's give them some of the 'South of the Equator' action on the moves, OK?" 

  "Yeah, I got a question...how many is a Brazilian? Like, 100 million or sumpin'?"

  "OK,that's it...you're OUT of the production!"

  "...and I mean WAY out..."

 "They've downgraded me to coach! COACH! All the way to New York City!!!"

 "Listen, it's not that bad... I'm penciled in for economy class on the way back..."

  "It may be fine for you, being a chorus girl and all...but...this is different for me...I can't fly coach...I CAN'T!! ....I WON'T!!!"

  "Er, ah...OK, bud, here's your carry-on baggage...we don't have no storage space left on the plane... those dames have a LOT of extra stuff they haul around wit' em - you know how THAT is, bud... oh, an' here's your transfer tickets... you're hooked up to change planes in Shreveport, then Bismark, then Rochester..."

  "...Shreveport? ...what is this 'Shreveport?' "

  "...They're just trying to milk you for extra mileage...look, there's a redeye from Miami all the way to LaGuardia (yeah, it's not called that in 1933, but just roll with it, y'all) without ANY connectors..."

  "...Better yet, there's a puddle jumper from Miami to Baltimore that shuttles twice a day...from there you could catch the express rail to NY, if you don't mind the frenetic taxi ride thru the Queen City... just don't inadvertently get on a B&O car, or you'll end up on Toledo or something..."

  "...When they said 'economy class', they weren't jiving, brother..."

  "Oh, well, there's a panoramic view being projected behind me, so that's nice..."

  "Hey, Pancho...where are you going to land this breadbox?"

  "...they look to be lined up...heck, this must be Hartsfield in Atlanta... I spent a week stranded on the tarmac there one day..."

  "I give up... you don't even know the flight patterns here, dude! ...where did you get your altimeter, from a box of Cracker Jacks?"

"Listen you...you're pretty and all, but, I've had just about enough of you... I have landed on this generic beach area here to leave you to your own devices... maybe you can swim to your 'Shreveport'...I shall stay in my mother country of Brazil!"

  "...Woah...he's a touchy little bugger..."

  "HEY!!! What about my frequent flyer miles?"

  "...woah, look at that big guy flying in...his approach is ALL whopperjawed..."

  "...wait a minute...isn't that..."

  "...BOAC!!!  Flew in from Miami Beach, even! London-town, here we come!!!"
Other Reviews:  
"Neither Miss Rogers nor Mr. Roulien have much to do, but both have a song apiece and both acquit themselves creditably." - New York Journal
"Ginger Rogers, whose talents are highlighted admirably in song and dance, is effectively teamed with Astaire." - Los Angeles Times
"The inspired music of Vincent Youmans, the grace of Fred Astaire, the dark beauty of Dolores Del Rio, Raul Roulien's singing, the comedy of Ginger Rogers and the love-making of Gene Raymond combine to make a glorious Hollywood holiday." - New York American 
"An impressive series of scenes are devoted to a dance known as the Carioca. During this interlude that nimble-toed Fred Astaire and the charming Ginger Rogers give a performance of this Carioca. The music is delightful, and besides Mr. Astaire and Miss Rogers many other persons dance the extraordinarily rhythmic Carioca, one feature of which happens to be that of the couples pressing their foreheads together as they glide around the floor... Both Miss Rogers and Mr. Astaire give splendid performances, Miss Del Rio is alluring and sufficent, and Mr. Raymond does well as the handsome hero." - The New York Times
From GINGER: My Story: "In Flying Down to Rio, Fred and I had secondary roles, and provided the comic relief. I played a band vocalist and sang "Music Makes Me"; our big moment together came during the full-scale production number, "The Carioca". Dave Gould was the film's dance director and his assistant was my old pal for Top Speed, Hermes Pan."
"Ask me today if I had any notion of what would spring from "The Carioca" and I'd have to say no. Even looking at Flying Down to Rio now, it is hard to believe that our brief assay onto the dance floor led to a string of musical films."  ...there's a lot more stuff in Ginger's bio regarding 'Rio'...check it out! 
Miscellaneous Stuff:
--- Ginger replaced Dorothy Jordan, who was to be Honey Hale, but dropped out of the production in order to marry the producer, Merian C. Cooper.
--- "The Carioca" was Oscar-nominated for the best song of 1935 (the first year the 'best song' category existed); somewhat ironically, it lost to "The Continental", from 1934's "The Gay Divorcee".
--- Rio was supposed to be Astaire's film debut, but production delays put the film on hold; as a result, Astaire was loaned by RKO to MGM for the movie Dancing Lady, where he does a routine with Joan Crawford.
--- Joel McCrea was to be Roger Bond, but was replaced by Gene Raymond for unknown reasons.
--- Astaire did not want to be 'tied' to one dance partner (as he had just 'broke away' from his sister Adele), and, while he enjoyed working with Ginger, was reluctant to do another film with her; however, after the public's response to their Carioca routine, he relented, much to our benefit...

GingerFilm Ranking: #03 of 20...Ginger has quite the personality in this one, not overtly sassy (save for the bum rush of one of the airplane dames), but Honey is pretty confident in whatever she is involved in, and cranks out quite a few cute one liners... so, considering the first GandF routine is here, as well as the awesomeness that is "Music Makes Me", it has to be in the top 5, right?   
After Nineteen Reviews:
#01 - Professional Sweetheart 
#02 - 42nd Street
#03 - Flying Down to Rio 

#04 - Sitting Pretty
#05 - The Tenderfoot
#06 - The Tip-Off
#07 - Queen High
#08 - Young Man of Manhattan
#09 - You Said A Mouthful
#10 - Carnival Boat
#11 - A Shriek in the Night
#12 - The Thirteenth Guest
#13 - Don't Bet On Love
#14 - Broadway Bad
#15 - Gold Diggers of 1933 
#16 - The Sap From Syracuse
#17 - Suicide Fleet
#18 - Follow The Leader
#19 - Honor Among Lovers
#20 - Hat Check Girl***
*** - Not viewed or reviewed due to unavailability.
Up Next: Chance at Heaven... Ginger plays the sucker in this one, which kind of gets my fur all frizzed... it's pretty unbelievable, y'all... ultimately one of the LEAST sassy performances we'll see for Ginger... but it still most likely has some points of interest.

Until then, as always...

KIG, Y'all!!!



  1. Fabulous review as always Huey honey!!! I hope your new year is treating you well. Many blessings coming your way this week!!!! Happy Sunday! Kori xoxo


  2. Thanks for the kind words, Kori!

    This one was pretty fun, as it is the first GandF film...one thing about it, the 'screen caps' are becoming more abundant...should be interesting when we get to the 'peak' of Ginger's career, which is really just around the corner...
    Well, hope you and yours are doing magnificent! Sounds like your Christmas went well...nice to see Ho-Ho treated you well! I would have had to kick him around a bit if he didn't! :-)
    We are back to 'normal', such as it is... school, work (although we are fixing to be off again for MLK day) - but we are all OK, nobody's sick - think this is the first Christmas in for, like, EVER that at least SOMEBODY in this house wasn't sick! Amen to that!
    Have a great time out there, Lady K!!!


Awards...Thanks, Y'all!!!

...I TRULY appreciate these, and the kind words regarding this blog...thanks for all the inspiration I have drawn from each of your blog sites, which are all awesome in their unique ways!!!
It is my hope that I can continue to make 'G-ology' interesting and informative regarding the 'Beautiful Science' of VKM, which is SUCH a great topic!!! ...And remember, your comments are what make Gingerology click - so keep cranking them out!

Thanks again, JW

Awarded by Gingerella on 11/18/09 AND by Sally on 01/31/10

Awarded by Gingerella on 11/18/09 AND by Sally on 01/31/10
Thanks, Gingerella and Sally!!!

Awarded by Amanda Cooper on 11/21/09

Awarded by Amanda Cooper on 11/21/09
Thanks, AC!!!

Awarded by Maggie on 02/10/10 AND by Kate Gabrielle on 02/11/10

Awarded by Maggie on 02/10/10 AND by Kate Gabrielle on 02/11/10
Thanks, Maggie and Kate Gabrielle!!!

Awarded by Camille on 03/25/11 AND by Anna on 03/29/11

Awarded by Camille on 03/25/11 AND by Anna on 03/29/11
Thanks, Camille and Anna!!!

Hometowns to Hollywood Busby Berkeley Blogathon 2018

Hometowns to Hollywood Busby Berkeley Blogathon 2018
...including the Gingerology entry of 'Gold Diggers of 1933'...