Once a jewel thief always a jewel thief? Yes and no. Yes if you consider the fact that Michael Lanyard also known as the Lone Wolf once retired from the "trade" but relapses back into his ... See full summary »
Once a jewel thief always a jewel thief? Yes and no. Yes if you consider the fact that Michael Lanyard also known as the Lone Wolf once retired from the "trade" but relapses back into his old habits when he is tempted by the emerald pendant of beautiful socialite Marcia Stewart. The trouble (?) is that he falls for the belle and he soon gets more interested in getting the girl than the jewels that adorn her. What he wants now is to return the pendant but a rival gang interfere and force him to take part in a big-time caper. Bad for them, Michael exposes them and hands them over to justice. Michael and Marcia will live happily ever after. Well, all things considered, once a thief...not always a thief! Written by
This is the cast which should have made the series
I had read that this film was well done, but I was a little bit surprised at how well the cast really fitted the parts. Melvyn Douglas is superb as Michael Lanyard, the Lone Wolf. His assistant, played by Raymond Walburn, is excellent in an understated role, something Walburn doesn't usually do. He's much more like a Jeeves to a Wooster here. As Crane, the inspector, Thurston Hall gives an incredibly nuanced performance which at times is so like Lionel Barrymore as to be uncanny. Usually I find Hall over-the-top, but his performance here definitely is a climb way up above his normal outcome. Gail Patrick as the love interest is fascinating as a good girl, this in view of the performances by which she is most remembered, namely "My Man Godfrey", made the next year, and "Stage Door", made a year after that. She's good, and her restrained acting, but intense and telling eyes always have the viewer captivated. Tala Birell and Henry Mollison are just shady enough without being nasty - as in typical serial material - to add charm rather than detraction to the film. Douglas Dumbrille is Douglas Dumbrille, and when he's bad he's a pleasure to watch. Only vipers are more dangerous. I think what is disappointing to me is the fact that this cast was not used in sequel series fashion. It would have been a very formidable combination. No, it's not as good as "The Thin Man" series, but it's very watchable and worth an hour and a half.
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