I Happen to Like it Unorthodox, Arbitrary, and Abrupt!

Posted: 24/12/2013 in 1973

torch song PDVD_009

Charles Walters’ Torch Song is by no means a great film.  I don’t even think it’s a good film, but it certainly is a curious one.  Why would Mr. Walters even need to make this on the heels of his very good film this year Lili?  Why did MGM need a film to showcase songs thrown out of The Band Wagon?  Why would Joan Crawford do a film like this which makes her and actresses like Jenny Stewart look absolutely foolish and irrelevant?  If anything, Torch Song raises a lot a of questions (most notably why we were all subjected to the horror of the blackface scene near the end of of this one), and this makes it a curious film indeed.

Joan Crawford is a total trainwreck in this one, and I’m sorry to say, I just can’t like her, and I can’t create any separation between the real Joan Crawford and Jenny Stewart.  Is this film a cry for help from her?  Again, it’s hard to come up with answers to these tough questions.  The only saving grace in this film is Michael Wilding, but even then his attraction to Jenny Stewart is inexplicable, even when it’s explained.

There is another film this year about a washed up actor trying to make it one more time in the MGM era, and that’s The Band Wagon.  It’s a terrific film.  Watch that one instead.

**1/2 ~AOS


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