The music of George and Ira Gershwin underscores this Academy Award-winning tale of an artist caught between two women in post-war Paris.
Shot almost entirely on the MGM studio lot, it’s a vivacious, glittering musical blessed with the amazing choreography of Kelly and a simple romantic plot about ex-soldier Jerry Mulligan (Kelly) who settles in Paris after World War I to be an artist and falls for the adorable Lisa, played by Leslie Caron.
Jerry also attracts the attention of an elegant older woman, Milo Roberts (Nina Foch) who purports to be an art patron. In spite of Milo’s obvious jealousy and Lisa’s existing boyfriend, Jerry knows he must follow his heart.
Oscar Levant co-stars as Jerry’s friend, Adam – a concert pianist who becomes a whole orchestra in the film’s “Ego Fantasy” sequence.
The selection of songs by George and Ira Gershwin and the show-stopping dance sequences make the film a fabulous hit. Few scenes in musicals match the eighteen-minute ballet, set to the Gershwin tone poem that brings this enchanting movie to a close.
Vincente Minnelli was a groundbreaking director of musicals and the perfect partner for Gene Kelly on this project. The film won six Academy Awards in 1951 – including Best Picture – as well as a special citation for Gene Kelly for his choreography.
Anna Q. Nilsson
Edna Mae Bestram