Disclaimer: This is not a review full of spoilers. Here I will only offer my thoughts and recommend it based on certain criteria. You must watch the movie for yourself and enjoy it in all of its pure, unfiltered, brand new glory.
I’m a sucker for old films, especially black-and-white ones. If it’s a musical, even better. Naturally, Daddy Long Legs from 1955 was on my running “to watch” list for a while. My mom had insisted that I watch it for the longest time, so once it got on Netflix, I knew I had no excuse to not watch it. The other night I finally saw it, without any previous idea of its plot.
Basically, Daddy Long Legs is about an American millionaire and statesman who travels to France for political matters, where he serendipitously discovers an orphanage and is enamored (from afar) by an 18 year-old French orphan. Fascinated by her joie de vivre and infectious personality, he decides to adopt her and provide her with a college education in America. Yet because he is middle-aged and she’s quite young, he sponsors her anonymously. As for the rest, I won’t say what happens—you’ll have to see for yourself.
The acting was pretty decent—albeit slightly hackneyed—and charming; aren’t all old films that way, though? I personally appreciated the French dialogue and limited scenes in France. The costumes were beautiful and teleported me back to the 1950s, although I didn’t always care for Fred Astaire‘s oversized suits… But I always love a film set in New York City and the retro sights of Manhattan were just charming and beautiful. In general, I enjoyed the mise-en-scène, but can’t say I totally liked the random dancing scenes in artificial backgrounds… You’ll know what I mean when you see the film.
Unfortunately, I won’t divulge the actual plot and ending… but I will say that I was slightly put off (and turned off) by certain relationships in the film. They reminded me a lot of the scenario in Gigi, one of my favorite old films that stars Leslie Caron, too. All in all, I enjoyed the movie for what it was worth, but can’t say I foresee myself watching the entire thing again. I’d rather rewatch Gigi, His Girl Friday, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, etc.
Name: Daddy Long Legs
Actors: Fred Astaire, Leslie Caron, Fred Clark