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The Cuban Love Song (1931)

Passed | | Musical, Romance | 5 December 1931 (USA)
A guilt-ridden U.S. Marine returns to Cuba to try to find his illegitimate child.


W.S. Van Dyke


C. Gardner Sullivan (screen play), Bess Meredyth (screen play) | 5 more credits »


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Complete credited cast:
Lawrence Tibbett ... Terry
Lupe Velez ... Nenita
Ernest Torrence ... Romance
Jimmy Durante ... O.O. Jones
Karen Morley ... Crystal
Louise Fazenda ... Elvira
Hale Hamilton ... John
Mathilde Comont ... Aunt Rose
Philip Cooper Philip Cooper ... Terry Jr. (as Phillip Cooper)
Ernesto Lecuona and the Palau Brothers' Cuban Orchestra Ernesto Lecuona and the Palau Brothers' Cuban Orchestra


A guilt-ridden U.S. Marine returns to Cuba to try to find his illegitimate child.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Musical | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

5 December 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Melodia Cubana See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Following the completion of this film, Lawrence Tibbett took a lengthy break (nearly four years) from acting in motion pictures. During this break Tibbett almost exclusively acted on the live stage or sang opera. See more »


After the war was announced and Terry and his fellow Marines march off to war they sang a medley of songs that started off with, "You're in the Army Now". Can't imagine a U.S. Marine EVER singing this song. See more »


Crystal: [Final lines] We'll have a grand time together. Won't we, Terry?
TerryTerry Jr.: Sure thing!
See more »


Features Her Man (1930) See more »


El Manisero (The Peanut Vendor)
(1929) (uncredited)
Music and Spanish Lyrics by Moïse Simons
Sung a cappella by Lupe Velez in Spanish
Sung by Lawrence Tibbett in Spanish
Reprised in Spanish at a New York nightclub with Ernesto Lecuona and the Palau Brothers' Cuban Orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

Creaky but Tuneful--and oh that Velez!
21 March 2006 | by jajwSee all my reviews

The Cuban Love Song is an early talkie with soaring tunes and a touching performance by Lupe Velez, who struggles, mightily, however, to sing the Herbert Stothart music. Most of the vocal duties are carried by Tibbett, whose excellent voice makes up for somewhat wooden acting that was unfortunately typical of the era. As a plot, the film depends on the old Madame Butterfly story (also used in Miss Saigon) of a military man stationed in the developing world (in this case, Cuba) who falls in love with, then loses, a local girl. Viewed today, the story seems tainted with racism, and Velez does occasionally overdo the cuchi-cuchi stuff. But the scene where Tibbett is called away to fight in WWI, and the Velez character tries to put up a bold front, has true emotional impact. Incidentally, the score contains "The Peanut Song," sung in Spanish, later used as a rousing number in the Judy Garland version of "A Star is Born."

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