GOLD DIGGERS IN PARIS is a tedious late '30s Warner Bros. musical brightened by leading lady Rosemary Lane and a concluding musical number choreographed by Busby Berkeley.
This movie has an unusually slow-moving plot concerning a French diplomat (Hugh Herbert) who mistakes the chorus girls of New York's Club Balle, a nightclub, for the American Academy Ballet and invites the group to perform at a dance competition in Paris. The Club Balle owner (Rudy Vallee) realizes there's a misunderstanding, but takes advantage of the trip, which will provide a financial windfall for his struggling club. Will the Club Balle dancers be exposed as a fraud before they have the chance to perform?
Since the film's finale is a big Busby Berkeley number, one can guess that the answer is yes, the Club Balle gets a chance to put on their special style of dancing. It's a pleasant routine, particularly the big group dance at the very end, but not on a par with Berkeley's typical Warner Bros. work.
The score is fairly weak, although Warren and Mercer's "Daydreaming (All Night Long)," sung by Vallee and Lane, is pleasant. The Warren-Dubin tune "I Wanna Go Back to Bali" is catchy, but there's not a whole lot more to the score than that; there are a couple more songs but I didn't find them memorable.
Lane is charming, as always, and Vallee is acceptable as her leading man, although he was much better suited for supporting comedy roles, such as those he played in THE PALM BEACH STORY (1942), which I feel was an Oscar-worthy performance, and THE BACHELOR AND THE BOBBY-SOXER (1947).
The film's biggest problem is the incessant mugging by a variety of unfunny comedian types, headed first and foremost by Hugh Herbert; he's joined by the Schnickelfritz Band, Allen Jenkins, Fritz Feld, Mabel Todd, Curt Bois, Melville Cooper, and Edward Brophy. These actors monopolize the screen time and and their style of humor simply isn't my personal cup of tea.
The beautiful chorus girls include Carole Landis, Diana Lewis (later Mrs. William Powell), Peggy Moran, Rosella Towne, and Janet Shaw. Gloria Dickson plays Vallee's ex-wife. Eddie "Rochester" Anderson is also in the cast.
GOLD DIGGERS IN PARIS was directed by Ray Enright. It runs 97 lonnnnng minutes.
GOLD DIGGERS IN PARIS is available on DVD as a single-title release or as part of the Busby Berkeley Collection, Volume 2. The other films in the set are HOLLYWOOD HOTEL (1937) with Dick Powell and Rosemary Lane; VARSITY SHOW (1937) with Dick Powell, Rosemary Lane, and Priscilla Lane; and GOLD DIGGERS OF 1937 (1936).