During the Great Depression, a wealthy banker throws away his wife's expensive fur coat; it lands on the head of a stenographer, leading to everyone assuming she is his mistress and has access to his millions.
There have been a spate of London police murders, the victims always killed by a long knife (which the police know is a sword cane), the murders always taking place in a deserted but ... See full summary »
Socially-conscious banker Thomas Dickson faces a crisis when his protégé is wrongly accused for robbing the bank, gossip of the robbery starts a bank run, and evidence suggests Dickson's wife had an affair...all in the same day.
Vincent Van Der Lyn, a Dutch freedom fighter in WWII, is forced to neutral Lisbon to escape the Nazis. There he meets a small band of underground conspirators. The group's leader, Ricardo ... See full summary »
Angela Twitchell is the daughter of a tooth-paste manufacturer, Rufus K. Twitchell, who has monopolized the business for many years that he has grown conservative, and his rivals have begin... See full summary »
A serial killer in London is murdering young women he meets through the personal columns of newspapers. He announces each of his murders to the police by sending them a cryptic poem. After ... See full summary »
Is a fine Irish-American girl whose strangely Italian (?) brother (named Sonny "Dinkie" Black) runs Detroit's Purple Gang. At least they are both Catholic. Beginning inside a prison, the film introduces the immortal Chester Morris as an undercover FBI agent who infiltrates the gang and falls for Terry (played by Jean Arthur).
They have a slick prison break sequence and a fair amount of action, romantic comedy, and Hollywood's on-going campaign to make G-Men public heroes. John Dillinger had been killed a few months before "Public Hero #1" went into production, they change the names and the city but recreate the events of his apprehension outside a theater.
Forgotten actor Joseph Calleia plays the gang boss and brother. He has the most challenging role and does a fine job portraying a multi-dimensional character. Lionel Barrymore gets to overact nicely as a perpetually drunk mob doctor.
"Public Hero #1" is a surprisingly good film. It's mix of genres is as strange as it sounds but that works in its favor if you like to get away from standard formula stories. While it lacks overall unity, the disparate pieces are quite well done and are very entertaining inside their own little compartments.
Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.
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