Universal casts Lon Chaney Jr in his first horror role, the exciting 59-minute thriller Man Made Monster starring Lionel Atwill as the man, and Chaney Jr as the monster. Includes a look at Chaney Jr’s career to date, and Atwill’s career thereafter.
One Sunday Afternoon made over in Old New York for The Strawberry Blonde. From director Raoul Walsh for Warner Bros. from a script by the Epstein brothers. Starring James Cagney, Olivia de Havilland, Rita Hayworth, and Jack Carson.
Comparing King Vidor’s adaptation of H.M. Pulham, Esq. (1941) to the novel by John P. Marquand, and why both tellings are wonderful. Excellent performances from Robert Young and Hedy Lamarr trickle down throughout the entire cast, most of who are perfect representations of the characters Marquand created on the page. It’s a quiet story that tells a lot in the end.
Enjoying a key scene between Chester Morris and Grant Mitchell in King for a Night (1933) leads to more Morris in a Boston Blackie entry plus Mitchell’s own starring vehicle, Father Is a Prince (1941), itself a remake of Big Hearted Herbert (1934), which is also discussed.
Roosty worships gangster dad “Stuff” Nelson in MGM’s The Penalty (1941). When the G-men send Roosty to the farm he has to adjust to life amongst the hicks. Starring Edward Arnold as Stuff, Lionel Barrymore and Gene Reynolds as Roosty.
Continuing the G-man cycle with Warner Brother’s Public Enemy’s Wife (1936) and its 1941 remake, Bullets for O’Hara. Reuniting Robert Armstrong and Margaret Lindsay from G Men with Pat O’Brien, Public Enemy’s Wife is a worthwhile Warner’s crime film, while the low budget O’Hara is worth a try for fans of the original.
Like Roddy McDowall I find myself focused on Donald Crisp throughout the Academy Award winning How Green Was My Valley (1941). Labor unrest invades the valley and Crisp’s once stable world changes.
A quiet little period piece until Susan Hayward arrives to fill it with sex, sin and hate, Adam Had Four Sons stars Warner Baxter with Ingrid Bergman in her second Hollywood role.
Brief first impressions of Andy Hardy’s Private Secretary (1941) written shortly after first viewing. Starring Mickey Rooney with the Hardy clan and Kathryn Grayson.
Is there a more brutal film from this period than Warner Brothers’ The Sea Wolf? Adapted by Robert Rossen from Jack London’s original story, directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Edward G. Robinson, John Garfield, Ida Lupino and Alexander Knox.