Perfectly fine, slightly above average second feature
Man of the People is an odd feature that starts out looking like it's going to be a story about a man battling against machine politics, and then turns into a picture about a crusading attorney. The always fine Joseph Calleia stars as Joe Moreno, an Italian-American lawyer struggling to get by until a local political boss (the estimable Thomas Mitchell) takes him under his wing in exchange for defending one of his corrupt cronies. After winning the case after a remarkable courtroom sequence involving gefilte fish, Moreno has had his fill of being an organization man and tenders his resignation. He then proceeds to join up with an independently minded DA (an uncredited Frank Reicher) to take on a confidence scheme involving a gold detecting machine. Though the end result is a somewhat disjointed film, it's never less than watchable, and Calleia delivers an excellent, subtle performance.
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