The Vagabond King

This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King.

With:
Dennis King Jeanette MacDonald O.P. Heggie Lillian Roth Warner Oland

This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King.

Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the Vagabonds’, stands out. Vagabond King, as an operetta, retards itself as a melodrama. Touches of grim realism are sapped of their power by girls in tights as pages in the royal court and dwarfs turning cartwheels.

At least one case of miscasting is also a handicap. Lillian Roth has neither the necessary age nor emotional maturity to play the passionate Huguette.

Despite its weaknesses, Vagabond King is always interesting. It’s a treat for the optics with some of the color effects of arresting beauty. Jeanette MacDonald’s performance supplies the requisite aroma of glamor.

1929/30: Nomination: Best Art Direction

The Vagabond King

Production: Paramount. Director Ludwig Berger; Screenplay Herman J. Mankiewicz; Camera Henry Gerrard; Editor Merrill White; Music Rudolph Friml; Art Director Hans Dreier

Crew: (Color) Extract of a review from 1930. Running time: 100 MIN.

With: Dennis King Jeanette MacDonald O.P. Heggie Lillian Roth Warner Oland

More Film

  • TrustNordisk Enlists EFM for Norwegian Folklore

    TrustNordisk Enlists EFM for Norwegian Folklore Pic 'The Ash Lad' (EXCLUSIVE)

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • Picnic at Hanging Rock

    Berlin: TV Series Gain More Traction as Festival Opens Doors to Small Screen Fare

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • Berlinale -- 2018 -- Maria Ramos

    Maria Ramos on Dilma Rousseff Impeachment Doc 'The Trial’

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • Chinese Producer Feng Xiaogang Attends at

    Berlin: Feng Xiaogang Dials up ‘Cell Phone 2’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • Jean Brehat Teams 'When Pigs Have

    'The Insult' Producer Teams With Helmer for 'Le Pape' (EXCLUSIVE)

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • Berlin Top Job Likely to be

    Berlinale Top Job Likely to be Split in Two After Dieter Kosslick Departure

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

  • berlin film festival placeholder berlinale

    Israel's Spiro Films Boards Nir Bergman's 'Here We Are' (EXCLUSIVE)

    This ornate operetta, a pageant of bright fabrics, big sets and milling mobs, is founded upon If I Were King, a story [by Justin Huntly McCarthy] which has been done three or four times earlier in pictures. Protagonist this time of Francois Villon is Englishman Dennis King. Musically, only the one number, ‘Song of the […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content