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.
Mary Rutledge arrives from the east, finds her fiance dead, and goes to work at the roulette wheel of Louis Charnalis' Bella Donna, a rowdy gambling house in San Francisco in the 1850s. She... See full summary »
Edward G. Robinson,
Ordinary man-in-the-street Arthur Ferguson Jones leads a very straightforward life. He's never late for work and nothing interesting ever happens to him. One day everything changes: he oversleeps and is fired as an example, he's then mistaken for evil criminal killer Mannion and is arrested. The resemblance is so striking that the police give him a special pass to avoid a similar mistake. The real Mannion sees the opportunity to steal the pass and move around freely and chaos results. Written by
Col Needham <email@example.com>
It's just amazing...if he'd wanted to, Ford could've given Sturges or Hawks a run for their money. He throws himself into the timing, the riffs. And it's got that whole 30's look: fantastic back-lot town, millions of extras, Vorkapich-y montage sequence. Arthur is hysterical in her "Mannion" sequence. Both she and Robinson are brilliantly directed. And this film makes Woman in the Window and Scarlet Street possible. Who was Robinson to evoke this kind of split character so often? Tough guy, art collector...I'm not one to spend as much time with the stories of actors as the stories of directors. But it's interesting - he puts the apron on here and "feminizes" himself just like in Scarlet Street. The economy and understatement of the scene where Slugs Martin is killed is perhaps the most "Fordian" moment of the film. The chilling quality of what is not shown looks forward to films like The Searchers. By the way, I find it funny that the gangster character uses possessive pronouns before his gerunds. I guess they were better educated then...
17 of 18 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?