Friday, June 3, 2011

The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T

Roy Rowland, 1953 (8.2*)
Totally fantastic story by Dr. Seuss, who also provided the set design and some song lyrics. This wonderful spoof of childhood music lessons features Hans Conreid as diabolical Dr. Terwilliker, who is writing the world's first piano concerto for 500 boys on a monstrous serpentine piano of his own creation, hence the film's title - his concerto takes 5,000 fingers.

Tommy Rettig plays one of the music students, who are basically held prisoner, and forced to play rehearse nearly all the time, staying in cells, and with the music school surrounded by an electrified fence. His help comes in the form of a surrogate dad, played by Peter Lind Hayes, who is an amateur inventor with a planned surprise invention for Dr. Terwilliker.

This is a fun movie all-around, it's surprising that it's not better known, given it's Dr. Seuss connection. It's just crazy enough to be an unforgettable children's fantasy.
Just one of the goofy set designs of
Dr. Seuss in 5,000 Fingers

The piano that seats 500 boys
I want one of these hand beanies


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Artist, photographer, composer, author, blogger, metaphysician, herbalist

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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