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Classics and discoveries from around the world, thematically programmed with special features, on a streaming service brought to you by the Criterion Collection.
The Band Wagon
Directed by Vincente Minnelli • 1953 • United States
Starring Fred Astaire, Cyd Charisse, Oscar Levant
“That’s entertainment!” One of the greatest of MGM’s classic musicals, this Vincente Minnelli–directed showstopper stars Fred Astaire as Tony Hunter, a washed-up Hollywood actor who returns to the Broadway stage in hopes of making a comeback. But when the tension between Hunter and his costar (Cyd Charisse) causes the show to flop in out-of-town previews, things start to look dire. Can they turn this turkey into a hit before opening night? Astaire dazzles in some of his most thrillingly inventive numbers, including the jazzy “Shine on Your Shoes,” the swooning romantic reverie “Dancing in the Dark,” and the hardboiled gangster parody “Girl Hunt Ballet.”