Can-Can

  • 1960
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Musical

While touring Fox Studios, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev visited the set of CAN-CAN and proved himself to be a rather prophetic film critic when he said of this costly but boring extravaganza, "The face of humanity is more beautiful than its backside." Radically altered from the Broadway musical upon which it is based, the film revolves around an old...read more

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While touring Fox Studios, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev visited the set of CAN-CAN and proved himself to be a rather prophetic film critic when he said of this costly but boring extravaganza, "The face of humanity is more beautiful than its backside." Radically altered from the

Broadway musical upon which it is based, the film revolves around an old French law forbidding can-can dancing, and the efforts of lawyer Francois Durnais (Frank Sinatra) to keep the authorities from shuttering the cafe run by his sweetheart, Simone Pistache (Shirley MacLaine). For some time

Francois has been able to use his influence with a kindly old judge (Maurice Chevalier) to keep the police away from Simone's door, but a new judge, Philippe Forrestier (Louis Jourdan), is determined to see justice done; that is, until he meets and falls hard for Simone. Matters become

increasingly complicated when Simone tries to use Philippe's attentions to push Francois into proposing, while the lawyer and the old judge conspire to publicly humiliate Philippe. Before this Walter Lang-directed film is over, Francois and Simone tie the knot, and the can-can is legalized after a

special performance of the dance in court. Weakly scripted, CAN-CAN is far too long at 134 minutes, especially since Chevalier contributes the film's only strong performance. Oddly, many of the songs from Cole Porter's score for the stage production have been replaced by Porter tunes from other

shows. It did receive a nomination by the Academy for Best Score, as well as Best Costume Design.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: While touring Fox Studios, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev visited the set of CAN-CAN and proved himself to be a rather prophetic film critic when he said of this costly but boring extravaganza, "The face of humanity is more beautiful than its backside."… (more)

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