Joel and Garda Sloan, a husband and wife detective team, who also sell rare books in New York, take a vacation to Seaside City. At Seaside, Joel's pal, Mike Stevens is managing and ... See full summary »
Joel and Garda Sloan, a husband and wife detective team, who also sell rare books in New York, take a vacation to Seaside City. At Seaside, Joel's pal, Mike Stevens is managing and preparing for their beauty pageant. Joel is made one of the judges plus he has invested $5,000 in it, to Garda's dismay. Eric Bartell, promoter, arrives to dupe Stevens. When Ed Connors, New York racketeer arrives, Bartell is mysteriously murdered. Joel and Garda set out to investigate the murder. Written by
B-movies were cheap and short films that were made to play as the lesser film at a double-feature. Many small-time studios specialized in Bs (such as Monogram and Republic) and the bigger studios also made Bs. In this case, the very respected MGM produced what seems like a B-movie in almost every way except that its stars were slightly better than you'd expect to see in a B. Franchot Tone and Ann Sothern star as a married couple who, not surprisingly, investigate crimes but are NOT professional detectives. I say 'not surprisingly' because there were plenty of B films with amateur detectives constantly showing up the police--such as Boston Blackie, Bulldog Drummond and Nancy Drew. And, like these other films, this was one of a series of such films--though NONE of the actors and actresses who played the two main roles played them in more than one film! The movie begins with Garda Sloane trying to trick her husband Joel into taking them on a vacation. Coincidentally, an old friend arrives and talks about a beauty contest going on at the SAME place where the Sloanes are headed (what are the odds?!). Once there, the Sloanes meet this friend once again but also (not surprisingly) stumble into a murder. And, like the genre, the pair begin investigating the crime and do far better than trained detectives.
The plot is about average for this sort of film--no better, no worse. However, Tone and Sothern are quite good AND the dialog is quite nice. It also helps that there is a nice sense of humor about the film--such as the wonderful dictophone scene. Overall, breezy and entertaining--but you wonder why neither Tone nor Sothern were used again for these roles.
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