|Barbra Streisand as Daisy Gamble / Melinda Winifred Wayne Moorpark Tentrees, nee Wainwhistle|
|Yves Montand as Dr. Marc Chabot|
|Jack Nicholson as Tad Pringle|
|Bob Newhart as Dr. Mason Hume|
|John Richardson as Robert Tentrees|
|"Hurry! It's Lovely Up Here"|
If any voice could coax flowers out of their beds in the morning, it's Streisand's
|It's not unusual for women to develop crushes on older men, but the near 20-year age difference between Streisand and Montage did nothing to help the pair's already staggering lack of chemistry|
The overall result is a charming musical that is nevertheless strangely choppy and uneven in tone. The film is, at turns, out and out funny, whimsical, stylish, lyrical, and sometimes breathtaking; but it frequently feels like we're watching the combined efforts of artists assigned to do their work without an awareness of one another. Structurally, the film is designed to contrast the past and present, but this duality translates somewhat schizophrenically in the work of the set designers, costumers, and especially the actors. Too much of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever feels and looks as though it were the victim of great deal of editing. Scenes which work stand apart and separate from those more problematic, the sum total never really adding up to a satisfying whole.
|The rooftop set and cast assembled for the Wait Till We're Sixty-Five production number that was filmed (and showed up on promotional stills) but cut out of the completed film|
The score (among my favorites) is lushly romantic, but the film itself (a protracted, metaphysical cockblock) has been cast and directed in such a fashion as to render all potential romance undesirable. (Personally, I didn't want Daisy to end up with ANY of her suitors.)
*Roadshow: A popular distribution method for “event” films in the 60s, roadshow films were higher priced, reserved-seat screenings with overtures, intermissions, and exit music. These films were habitually 2 ½ to 4 hours long. They gradually fell out of favor in the late 70s.
|Dr.Chabot hypnotizes Daisy through telepathy|
|The Royal Pavilion in Brighton, England features in one of the film's many stunning flashback sequences.|
And what a fix it was. Lit to look like a goddess and costumed with decolletage for days, Streisand was a heady dose of 70s-style movie star glamour. On a Clear Day You Can See Forever was the movie that made me fall in love with Streisand (alas, a short-lived romance that ended with 1979s The Main Event) and my personal siren song was her gangbusters delivery of the title tune. I made a point of always being the usher stationed near the doors at the end of each screening just so I could stand inside, flashlight in hand, mouth agape, and wait for her to rattle the crystal on the chandeliers with that final note.Wow! Talk about your goosebumps moment.
|Not sure if this was a wig or her real hair, but this is the look I always associate with Streisand|
It's professional, well-done, and definitely enjoyable, but for a musical about mysticism, it's sorely lacking in that intangible kind of charm Minnelli pulled off so beautifully in Meet Me in St. Louis. Perhaps it's impossible to find an actress charismatic enough to be a musical lead, while at the same time, believably bland enough to make a convincing Daisy Gamble. (Streisand's Daisy doesn't really make sense. She's supposed to be a drip but she's the most stylish, funny, and interesting person in the film. She's the only one you want to spend any time with.) Hard to feel that the legendarily meticulous Vincente Minnelli had his heart in this one. He was 63 at the time and while making this film his third marriage was breaking up, and his first wife, Judy Garland, had died.
|"What Did I Have That I Don't Have?"|
Streisand's vocal performance and acting on this song is peerless. I've seen it dozens of times and it always gives me waterworks.
|The visual pleasures of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever are considerable|
|The Great Profile|
|"I'll have what she's having."|
|Daisy's Emancipation / Melinda's Emancipation|
Daisy's recognition and acceptance of her reincarnated self is dramatized in the echoing of her costuming
Behind the scenes info on the making of "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever"
YouTube audio (with stills) of the deleted Barbra Streisand / Larry Blyden duet: "Wait 'till We're Sixty-Five"
If they can restore 1973s Lost Horizon, why not On a Clear Day You Can See Forever ?
THE STUFF OF DREAMS