6.7/10
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22 user 8 critic

The Cat and the Fiddle (1934)

A romance between a struggling composer and an American singer.

Directors:

William K. Howard, Sam Wood (uncredited)

Writers:

Bella Spewack (screen play), Sam Spewack (screen play) (as Samuel Spewack) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ramon Novarro ... Victor
Jeanette MacDonald ... Shirley
Frank Morgan ... Daudet
Charles Butterworth ... Charles
Jean Hersholt ... Professor
Vivienne Segal ... Odette
Frank Conroy ... Theatre Owner
Henry Armetta ... Taxi Driver
Adrienne D'Ambricourt ... Concierge
Joseph Cawthorn ... Rudy
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Storyline

Victor Florescu is a talented, Brussels-based composer of serious music under the tutelage of respected Professor Bertier at the Music Conservatory. He is hoping to have his yet uncompleted operetta, "The Cat and the Fiddle", produced by famed impresario, Jules Daudet. Victor's focus in life changes when he meets Shirley Sheridan, a New Yorker just arrived in Brussels, she who moves into the pensione next to his own. He falls in love at first sight with her. She is also a composer - of the type of music more often heard in Tin Pan Alley - and is hoping to study with Professor Bertier. But it is Victor who helps her with her music. She also catches the attention of Daudet, who publishes her music although he is more interested in her as a woman. Regardless, she becomes rich and famous, and is required to move to Paris. In the short term, Victor, who moves to Paris with her, is more than willing to forgo his own musical aspirations to help her. But Victor is forced to choose between ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From the Musical Success that ran Two Years on Broadway See more »


Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 February 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

O Gato e o Violino See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$843,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The song "Don't Ask Me Not to Sing" is actually from the Jerome Kern musical "Roberta", which opened on Broadway in 1933. "Roberta" was filmed in 1935 (Roberta (1935)), but the song was omitted from the film version. It was, however, used in the 1952 Technicolor remake of "Roberta", Lovely to Look At (1952). See more »

Quotes

Victor: Every morning you and I will ride Teresa through the park. The sun will shine, the birds will sing, the flowers will bloom...
Shirley: And I'll yell for the police!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in After Office Hours (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

Poor Pierrot
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by Jerome Kern
Lyrics by Otto A. Harbach
Sung by Jeanette MacDonald
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ramon and Jeanette, an unlikely team
14 June 2011 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Silent screen star Ramon Novarro teams up with Jeanette MacDonald in "The Cat and the Fiddle," a 1934 musical film. The film also stars Jean Hersholt, Frank Morgan, and Vivienne Segal.

The story concerns two songwriters, one from a classical background, Victor Florescu (Novarro, and one assumes from that last name, he's from Roumania), and Shirley Sheridan (MacDonald) a young woman from a popular songwriting background who meet. He falls madly in love with her, even turning down a major opportunity with an impresario (Morgan) who turns out to be more interested in Jeanette as a girlfriend.

Eventually Victor wins over Shirley, and the two move in together. Now, I thought the code came in earlier than this, but it appears I'm wrong. I was very surprised when later in the movie, she suggests that they get married because I thought they already were.

Her song becomes a huge hit. Eventually he succumbs to the impresario's pressure to get him out of the picture by breaking up with Shirley. He is convinced that he is holding her back. Victor then gets a big opportunity when a star (Segal) agrees to appear in his operetta. When he refuses to be seduced by her, her husband gives her a choice, the operetta or him, Mr. Money Bags, and she leaves with her husband. Now he's stuck, and he owes money to boot.

This film ran something like one hour and thirty minutes and seemed longer than Battleship Potemkin. This mainly had to do with the casting of Navarro who could just about carry a tune, and when he did, his voice had a tremelo faster than a butterfly's wings.

Jeanette MacDonald, of course, is luminous - beautiful, charming, and in great voice. Navarro did just not have what it took to be her leading man. As stiff as Nelson Eddy was, there was something about the two of them together that had real chemistry. No such thing here.

This is a movie, as someone said here, for Jeanette MacDonald fans only. She's always worth watching, and someone here also mentioned seeing her do King & I. I'm envious.


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