The Tunnel of Love

You are invited to rate and comment on the 39 films of Doris Day.

How do you rate The Tunnel of Love?

Poor
12
24%
Average
19
37%
Good
14
27%
Excellent
6
12%
 
Total votes: 51

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Johnny
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Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: The Tunnel of Love

Unread post by Johnny »

Thank you Paul and Musiclover for your interesting and insightful posts.

I do really like the opening highway scene with Doris and Richard riding in the convertible with the upbeat song Tunnel of Love playing. Doris looks radiant. Why wasn't this film made in colour? It is one more element that would have brightened this film. As you said Paul, the film feels claustrophobic.

I really like Glen Ford's natural charm and it would have been terrific to see his chemistry with Doris on screen. This would have been another improvement.

It might have helped to have a different actress play the Gia Scala role as the caseworker. The first scene between Widmark and Scala was awkward not funny.

Gig Young and Elisabeth Fraser are effective and funny as the neighbours.

Why didn't Kelly stick closer to what made The Tunnel of Love a very successful play on Broadway?

As you said Musiclover, not much could have helped the script as written.
Johnny

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Johnny
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Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: The Tunnel of Love

Unread post by Johnny »

The Tunnel of Love - Movie Trivia

The first movie Gene Kelly directed in which he did not also star.

Doris Day wrote that her manager/husband Martin Melcher was terribly concerned over the box-office failure of this film and It Happened To Jane (1959). Their failures caused Day to drop out of the Top Ten Box Office Stars. Day and Melcher has words about him hustling her into almost any film for the money instead of waiting to find good scripts that would have produced better results.

Doris Day’s final black and white movie.

Director Gene Kelly said he accepted this assignment as a way of fulfilling the final obligation of his longterm contract with M-G-M, but studio executives stipulated he had to shoot it in black and white , using only one main set, with a production schedule of only three weeks, and with a strict budget of just $500,000. The studio was delighted when Kelly was able to honour all those provisions, but the film proved to be a box office disappointment.

This was the third of four films in which Gig Young co-starred with Foris Day. The others were That Youch of Mink, Young at Heart, and Teacher’s Pet.
Johnny

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jmichael
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Joined: 23 Apr 2005, 06:00
Location: Overland Park, KS USA

Re: The Tunnel of Love

Unread post by jmichael »

This must have been about the time Marty realized they were in financial trouble due to Rosenthal’s mismanagement because the quality of her mid-fifties, post/WB period was top drawer. Ok, there was Julie but at least it made money and gave her a challenging part.

Tunnel however feels like a money grab because of the dull script, cheap looking sets and flat BW cinematography. Doris’s character was passive and thinly drawn, not at all like the Doris Day of TP, PG, CJ or LMOLM. As Johnny mentioned, Glenn Ford would have been a much better fit than Richard Widmark - a fine villain and film noir veteran - but not a romantic comedy lead.

Marty should not have been surprised when Tunnel flopped either. It was a huge step down from what preceded it.

Michael
Michael H

"There's nothing in my bedroom that bothers me."

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Johnny
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Joined: 10 Oct 2007, 16:02
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: The Tunnel of Love

Unread post by Johnny »

In David Kaufman's book on Doris Day , he writes about The Tunnel of Love:

"The film was further undermined by the decision to alter the play's risque ending. In the stage version , a question remains whether or not Augie actually fathered a baby with another woman that he and Isolde adopt.Un the film, the uncertainty is eliminated. Cleaned up for mainstream Hollywood audience of 1958, the film lost its' edge."

Production began on January 22-1958, and concluded during the first week of March. 'I don't think Dick Widmark was a happy camper " Elisabeth Wilson continued, "I don't think Doris was particularly happy, either. I think she needed somebody to talk to, and she felt comfortable with me. Dick Widmark and I bonded too. And Gene Kelly was very gentle and supportive. But I think maybe because we all just needed each other. Let's face it, it was a strang kind of comedy. The film just didn't feel right, ( when we were making it). It didn't feel like the play at all. The work was just empty. I can remember Gene Kelly trying to keep a sense of humour. At one point , he picked up a girl and was dancing around with her.'
Johnny

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