What is it? The musical tale of a debonair man (Louis Jordan) who falls for a teen (Leslie Caron) who's being trained to become a rich man's mistress, in Belle Epoque France. Maurice Chevalier is his uncle and her mentor.
Why did it win? This is another of those 1950s musicals that seemed to act on the Academy in much the same way that a pipe melody acts on a snake: they appeared to have no free will when it came to brightly coloured sets (particularly those representing Paris) and big song-and-dance numbers. There's no other explanation. Nowadays, the ickiness of the 69 year-old Chevalier singing Thank Heaven For Little Girls would probably be a deal breaker.
Did it deserve to win? Nope. Vertigo and Touch of Evil were not nominated. Among the nominees, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof or Auntie Mame would have been better: even the relatively unsubtle social message of The Defiant Ones is considerably better. It's not a dreadful film or anything - the design is lovely and drew justified comparisons to My Fair Lady - but it's horrendously dated and a bit morally dubious.
Worth a look? Not so much. Get hold of Vertigo instead.