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Part of the London Lives Season 15 October 2014 02:30 PM

Sailing along

Director Sonnie Hale
Writers Sonnie Hale, Selwyn Jepson, Lesser Samuels
Year 1938
Starring Jessie Matthews, Barry MacKay, Jack Whiting, Roland Young
Admission Free admission
Location Birkbeck Cinema
43 Gordon Square, London, WC1H 0PD
Program Notes Download

Last and one of the best of the musicals that made Jessie Matthews England’s answer to the great American song and dance stars of the 30s. Living on a Thames barge, Kay (Matthews) dreams of a stage career, and a visiting American star (Whiting) seems to offer the chance – except that there’s also a millionaire waiting in the wings. Designed by Alfred Junge in high deco style, and produced by Michael Balcon for Gaumont-British at Pinewood, the film’s premise may have seemed prophetic. But Matthews’ marriage to her director, Hale, was in trouble, and the war effectively ended her career, before a late return to acting on radio (Mrs Dale’s Diary) and television drama in the 1960s.

More films in the London Lives season