Pal Joey (1957)

Pal Joey (1957), directed by George Sidney.

Like most musicals it's a slight story: wisecracking bad boy singer Frank Sinatra is torn between good girl Kim Novak and not-so-good but rich society widow Rita Hayworth. It features some fine song standards by one of the great voices of the 20th century. The women's singing voices are dubbed. Despite their inherent glamour the women mostly react to Sinatra; the focus is almost always on him.

For some reason I've never warmed up to Sinatra, but at some moments, especially when singing, he has strange depths and undeniable magnetic presence. I recall one quipster saying he played the Pal Joey character for the rest of his life. That can't be right: Sinatra had this tormented tough guy thing going before that, didn't he?

Musical arrangements by Nelson Riddle.

Twilight Time limited edition Blu-ray, mastering by Sony. Isolated score. As far as I can tell the disc accurately presents the large-grained film stock.