2 May 2019 | HotToastyRag
Big cast and special effects
There are three reasons why you'd rent Suez: if you think Tyrone Power is the most handsome classic actor ever, if you want to see the chemistry between him and Annabella, whom he married the next year, or if you like special effects movies and want to see an epic sandstorm.
Ty, as exquisitely handsome as he usually is, starts the movie in love with Loretta Young, whom I normally can't stand and still can't, even after watching this movie. She wants to wear a crown, so she becomes engaged to Emperor Napoleon III, played by Leon Ames, instead. To mend his broken heart, and to feed his masculine ambition, Ty becomes involved in architecture, eventually leading him to Suez, where he plans to build a canal. The supporting cast of this movie is huge, with Joseph Schildkraut playing Ty's steadfast friend, Henry Stephenson playing Ty's father, Sig Ruman playing Annabella's father, Nigel Bruce, Sidney Blackmer, Rafaela Ottiano, and Miles Mander as Benjamin Disraeli. While there is a lot to keep you entertained, with all the familiar faces, this movie isn't as well remembered as other special effects epics, like The Rains Came and The Hurricane. Compared against those, Suez does fall short, since the love triangle is hardly entertaining, even with the knowledge that there was a backstage romance going on, and until Ty starts building the canal, his career path is a little boring.
Annabella may have snagged herself the leading man in the film, but she didn't snag herself a very good part. Her character is so irritating, it's no wonder Ty keeps holding a torch for Loretta! With her hair cropped like a boy and most of her costumes as shirts and britches, she appears to be very masculine, as compared to Loretta's gorgeous gowns, jewels, styled hair, and poise amidst royalty. In Annabella's entrance scene, she's bathing, and the filmmakers were able to sneak in a bit of nudity despite the watchful eye of the Hays Code. She's portrayed as illiterate, unfeminine, rude, obnoxious, and pushy, and yet she thinks she can win Tyrone Power over? In real life she did, so check this movie out if you want to see how she did it.