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An American in Paris (1951)

Arthur Freed’s production unit at MGM didn’t just make musicals; it made magic. Working with the best in the industry, he showed that musicals could use song and dance to tell stories and reflect the emotional richness of American popular culture. For many, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS is the apotheosis of Freed’s aesthetic. Vincente Minnelli brings his unique visual style to Alan Jay Lerner’s tale of an expatriate American artist (Gene Kelly) torn between the love of a French gamine (Leslie Caron) and the wealthy patron (Nina Foch) who can make him a success. His conflicts come to a head in the famous 17-minute dream ballet inspired by themes from George Gershwin’s tone poem, “An American in Paris,” one of the greatest dance sequences ever put on screen.

d. Vincente Minnelli, 114m, DCP