21 October 2017 | richardchatten
Innocuous Vehicle for Prewar British Child Star Hazel Ascot
Producer-Director John Baxter made pioneering dramas about life among the underclass which he underwrote with glossy escapism like this, which is the usual stuff about a talented young entertainer who rises to the top in the face of parental disapproval. (Including a blackface number that shocks her headmistress for entirely different reasons from why it might offend modern viewers.) The title makes it clear that 'Stepping Toes' was devised as a vehicle for pre-war nine-day wonder Hazel Ascot, an attractive young lass with an engaging smile and nimble gangling legs.
Miss Ascot is not called upon to do much acting, most of the dialogue being handled by the grown-ups, who spend much of the film's running time talking about her during her long stretches offscreen (while she herself was presumably at school).
Ernest Butcher provides welcome relief from the prevailing upbeat tone with his miserable face and growling delivery during some the film's more caustically amusing moments.