The Broadway Melody (1929)

Action, Drama, Musical, Romance
Bessie Love, Anita Page, James Gleason, Dorothy Coonan Wellman
At a recording studio in New York City, Eddie Kearns (Charles King) sings "The Broadway Melody", and tells some chorus girls that he brought the Mahoney Sisters vaudeville act to New York to perform it with him in the latest revue being produced by famed Broadway producer Francis Zanfield (Eddie Kane).Harriet "Hank" Mahoney (Bessie Love) and her sister Queenie Mahoney (Anita Page) are awaiting Eddie's arrival at their hotel apartment on 46th Street. Hank, the older sister, prides herself on her business sense and talent, while Queenie is lauded for her beauty. Hank is confident they will make it big while Queenie is less eager to put everything on the line to become a star. The sisters Uncle Jed (Jed Prouty) arrives for a quick visit and offers them a 30-weeks traveling show. Hank declines the offer, but consents to think it over.Eddie, who is engaged to Hank, arrives and sees Queenie for the first time since she was a little girl and is instantly taken with her. He tells them to come to a rehearsal for Zanfield's revue to present their act. At the theater, A blond woman sabotages their performance by placing a bag in the piano, which causes a fight with Hank. Zanfield isn't interested in it, but says he might have a use for Queenie, who begs him to give Hank a part as well, saying both will work for one wage. She also convinces him to pretend that Hank's business skills won him over. Eddie witnesses this exchange and becomes even more enamored of Queenie for her devotion to her sister.During a dress rehearsal for the revue, Zanfield says the pacing is too slow for "The Broadway Melody" and cuts Hank and Queenie from the number. Meanwhile, another woman is injured after falling off a set prop and Queenie is selected to replace her. Nearly everyone is captivated by Queenie, particularly notorious wealthy playboy Jacques "Jock" Warriner (Kenneth Thomson). While Jock begins to woo Queenie, Hank is upset that Queenie is building her success on her looks rather than her talent.Over the following two weeks, Queenie spends a lot of time with Jock, of which Hank and Eddie fervently disapprove. They forbid her to see him, which results in Queenie pushing them away and the deterioration of the relationship between the sisters. Queenie is only with Jock to fight her growing feelings for Eddie, but Hank thinks she's setting herself up to be hurt. Eventually, Eddie and Queenie confess their love for each other, but Queenie, unwilling to break her sister's heart, runs off to Jock once again.Hank, after witnessing Queenie's fierce outburst toward Eddie and his devastated reaction to it, finally realizes that they are in love. She verbally berates Eddie for letting Queenie run away and tells him to go after her. She claims to never have loved him and that she'd only been using him to advance her career. After he leaves, she breaks down and alternates between sobs and hysterical laughter. She composes herself enough to call Uncle Jed to accept the job with the 30-week show.There's a raucous party at the apartment Jock had recently purchased for Queenie, but he insists that they spend time alone. When she resists his advances, he says that it's the least that she could do after all he's done for her. He begins to get physical, but Eddie bursts in and attempts to fight Jock, who knocks him through the door with one punch. Queenie runs to Eddie and leaves Jock and the party behind.Sometime later, Hank and Uncle Jed await the return of Queenie and Eddie from their honeymoon. The relationship between the sisters is on the mend, but there is obvious discomfort between Hank and Eddie. Queenie announces she's through with show business and will settle down in their new house on Long Island. She insists that Hank live with them when her job is over. After Hank leaves with her new partner and Uncle Jed, Queenie laments the fact that she wasn't able to help her sister find the happiness she deserves. Ironically, Hank's new partner is the blond woman who tried to sabotage the act when the sisters first arrived in New York. The final scene shows Hank, Uncle Jed and the blond woman in a taxicab on their way to the train station. Hank promises her new dancing partner that they'll be back on Broadway within six months.
  • 1929-02-01 Released:
  • 2016-02-08 DVD Release:
  • N/A Box office:
  • N/A Writer:
  • Harry Beaumont Director:
  • N/A Website:

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