So Long at the Fair (1950)

“Paris! City of Love and Intrigue—Scene of the Most Fascinating Mystery Ever Filmed!” Based on a popular urban legend, So Long at the Fair is an immensely entertaining mystery/thriller set in Paris in 1889. British travelers “Vicky Barton” (Jean Simmons) and her older brother “Johnny” (David Tomlinson, best known as “Mr. Banks” in Mary Poppins) journey to the “City of Light” to attend the “Exposition Universelle,” a world’s fair. After a night on the town that includes a visit to the famous Moulin Rouge, the siblings retire to the respective guestrooms at their hotel. However, the next morning, Vicky discovers that Johnny has vanished without a trace (along with his entire guestroom!). In addition, the whole staff claims to have no knowledge of Johnny ever having checked into the hotel. With the help of friendly English painter “George Hathaway” (Dirk Bogarde), Vicky desperately attempts to unravel the mystery and find out what happened to her missing brother. Most of the action occurs within the hotel but there is a particularly disturbing scene of a hot-air balloon catching fire and plummeting to the ground at the Exposition. Directed by Terence Fisher and Antony Darnborough, So Long at the Fair was based on a 1947 novel of the same name by Anthony Thorne (the title comes from the folk song “Oh Dear! What Can the Matter Be?”). The cast includes Cathleen Nesbitt, Marcel Poncin, Zena Marshall, Austin Trevor, Felix Aylmer, Betty Warren and Honor Blackman (“Pussy Galore” from Goldfinger). Fisher went on to direct some classic Hammer horror movies such as The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), Horror of Dracula (1958), The Revenge of Frankenstein (1958) and The Mummy (1959). Son of Frankenstein [1939]

Leave a Reply

Close Menu