Release Date: May 10, 2016
I Could Go On Singing was unintentionally the last film of Judy’s life. It features a semi-autobiographical plot and Judy’s final collaboration with the songwriting team of Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, the men who sent her into superstardom with their score for The Wizard of Oz (1939).
Judy’s joined by British actor Dirk Bogarde. The two portray a couple who parted ways so the woman (Judy as “Jenny Bowman”) could pursue a career while giving up the right to be in her son’s life, who doesn’t know this famous American singer is his mother when she comes to visit and attempts to become a part of his life.
I Could Go On Singing is not Judy’s best film, nor is it her worst. Directed by Ronald Neame, the plot is standard melodrama but in the hands of Judy and Dirk, it’s quite watchable in spite of its rather somber tone, coming alive in several dramatic scenes and “Jenny’s” concert appearances at the London Palladium. “Jenny” sings “Hello, Bluebird,” “It Never Was You,” “By Myself,” and the title song, the latter specifically written for the film by Arlen and Harburg. These are the closest representations of the event that was “Judy Garland in Concert” as we’ll ever get to see on film (only her TV appearances compare).
The image quality of the Blu-ray is crystal clear, making it that much more watchable. The audio track is a solid mono, with an additional alternate “Isolated Score Track (with some effects)” track mostly in stereo including the songs excepting “It Never Was You.” Two trailers, a TV spot, and two audio commentaries (producer Lawrence Turman with film historians Lem Dobbs & Nick Redman; and film historians David Del Valle & Steven Peros) complete the extras. Produced for Twilight Time by Brian Jamieson and Nick Redman, this is one Blu-ray release that’s not to be missed.
Although it’s now out of print, copies can be found on various auction sites.