© 2014 William Ahearn

Every time I think I know what to expect from a Weimar era film, I get a surprise. In this case, I was expecting a sort of Berlin Cabaret cum Different from the Others and instead I get an absolutely nonsexual romantic comedy with the sole exception of a scene where Susanne as Viktor flirts with a woman so she can pass as a man that leads to a brawl in a rowdy club. 

Two unemployed performers meet at a booking agent’s office and become unromantically friendly and when he gets sick for his female impersonation gig she takes over and a woman impersonates a man to impersonate a woman. Then she meets a friend of the performer and falls in love with him only he thinks she’s a male. There is much singing and dialog in verse and hilarity ensues. A good-natured comedy with plenty of singing.

Not my usual cup of tea but the film has real charm and as one last films of the era a sort of bittersweet aftertaste. There was a French version made simultaneously, a British remake soon after and two Hollywood remakes, one in 1957 and the best-known version by Blake Edwards in 1982.

Written and directed by Reinhold Schünzel with cinematography by Konstantin Irmen-Tschet    and music by Franz Doelle. Starring Renate Müller, Hermann Thimig, Hilde Hildebrand, Friedel Pisetta, Fritz Odemar, and Aribert Wäscher, among others.