Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Cynthia (1947)

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Elizabeth Taylor, George Murphy, S.Z. Sakall, Mary Astor, Gene Lockhart

ELIZABETH TAYLOR's fans are really the only ones who will find any reason to watch CYNTHIA, a sugar-coated confection about a sickly girl churned out by MGM for the fast developing teen who was turning into a woman almost overnight.  Here, at fifteen, she's still got a lot of her girlish charm, exhibits a modest singing voice (is that her???), and portrays a girl who's so fragile that her parents hold her back from doing anything more strenuous than going to the corner store. Ironically, it foretells Liz's own lifelong struggle with illness. GEORGE MURPHY and MARY ASTOR are her rather stern but loving parents and JIMMY LYDON is the boyfriend who gives Taylor her first screen kiss. S.Z. SAKALL is her encouraging music teacher. It's all very downbeat without a sense of humor, too straightforward in the telling for its own good. Unimaginative and more of a B-film than anything else.

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