Philandering actor Richard Hardell is murdered at a movie studio. His jealous wife Blanche, his director Rupert Borka, and a girl he mistreated, Helen MacDonald, all have substantial ... See full summary »
I generally cut very early sound films a lot of slack. After all, the filmmakers were new to the medium and the films lacked the polish of movies made just a year or two later. But this one is one that NO ONE could cut any slack because it really, really stinks!!!
The title character is played by William Boyd (later known as 'Hopalong Cassidy')--a guy who COULD act. But here, he sounds like an incompetent actor--and that's putting it mildly. He way overannunciates EVERYTHING and his delivery is impossible to believe. To make things worse, pretty much EVERYONE in the movie overannunciated--like they all just received coaching from a voice coach who was insane. And, the director was equally insane for that matter. And, the writer was insane as NO ONE on this planet talks like these folks!
The film is about Lt. O'Brien of the police force and his fight with a mob leader. At first, it seems like the mob boss will be convicted of doing bad stuff--but there in the middle of court, the chief witness against him is shot!! And, no one saw anything!!! And, this point was never explained in the least!! There is a concurrent plot about O'Brien's father who has been paroled....and all this really made no sense either.
The only thing I enjoyed in the least was seeing Arthur Houseman as Mr. Zurich. Houseman almost always plays funny and affable drunks and seeing him play a murderous gang member was kind of fun....kind of but not enough to give this film a score higher than 2! Yecch.
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