I like Powell and Pressburger as much as the next film nut but what the hell were they thinking when they made this film? This team was always extremely eccentric with the type of films they made but whose idea was it to update Die Fledermaus to the contemporary setting of occupied Vienna after World War II? Why cast a prima ballerina Ludmilla Tcherina, as the lead character and then not have her dance that seems like an even goofier idea.
Powell and Pressburger's plan was to take the "legendary" Johann Strauss operetta Die Fledermaus and apparently update it a bit. They had the lyrics translated into English and they filmed the whole thing on sound stages in CinemaScope. Artificial sets were created to heighten the unreality of the whole thing, as if the whole film wasn't unreal enough by this point. Where they got the idea that people would want to watch actors performing to overdubbed songs from an operetta that was staged back in 1874 would be anyone's idea of a good time boggles this little mind. Apparently the thinking was that they could make a stylish entertainment out of an idea like this. But, Powell and Pressburger's idea of stylish humor is to have an overweight Austrian sitting around eating strudel, that's really funny stuff alright.
Why any studio would have given Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger the money to film this garbage completely escapes me, didn't anyone read the script or listen to the outdated music? Only complete creative arrogance on the part of the filmmakers can explain this thing.
Film historians usually claim that Michael Powell's career ended with Peeping Tom, but I could make the very strong argument that Oh Rosalinda is the real end of the line for him.