Cinema Revisited: Singin’ In The Rain (1952)

Gene Kelly’s follow up to Oscar-winning “An American In Paris” showers with joy


Jack Renaud, Staff Writer

Time and time again, there are films which open to average reviews, but overtime their reputation begin to grow, and becomes reinstated as a classic. Gene Kelly’s song and dance spectacular opened back in 1952, and it wasn’t until decades later when moviegoers realized what they were missing out on. Although it may have missed out on those “old honky tonk monkeyshines”, “Singin’ In The Rain” has since been deemed by many as the best Hollywood musical ever made.

Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) is a silent film star, who works for Monumental Pictures, alongside the visibly (but not audibly) pleasing Lina Lamont (Jean Hagen). The year is 1927, and Warner Brothers have just released the first “talking picture”. With silent films becoming extinct, Lockwood, alongside his best friend Cosmo (Donald O’Connor) and love interest, Kathy (Debbie Reynolds), must conform to these drastic changes in the world of cinema.

There’s really nothing new I can say about this film that someone else has said before me. This film is beyond glorious, and full of glee and emotion at every song number. Every time I’ve re-watched the film, I have found myself becoming entranced by a different song I wasn’t already before. Whether the female ensemble of “All I Do Is Dream Of You” or Kelly and O’Connor’s fast paced “Moses Supposes”, there’s something new about every re-watch. Seriously, who can forget Kelly’s immortal eponymous number, which rumor says he recorded while being sick with a fever. Legendary.

Despite bearing a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, the film was shut out of the race for Best Picture at that year’s Academy Awards, despite being remembered far more than the eventual winner (“The Greatest Show On Earth”). I got to see this film at the Kentucky Theater back in April, and it really did the job of what movies should do – transport us. Films like “Singin’ In The Rain” remain timeless because of emotions on and off screen, because like Kelly, I have a smile on my face. So, come on with the rain.