A frustrated former big-city journalist now stuck working for an Albuquerque newspaper exploits a story about a man trapped in a cave to re-jump start his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.
Sullivan is a successful, spoiled, and naive director of fluff films, with a heart-o-gold, who decides he wants to make a film about the troubles of the downtrodden poor. Much to the chagrin of his producers, he sets off in tramp's clothing with a single dime in his pocket to experience poverty first-hand, and gets some reality shock. Written by
Bob Doolittle <Bob.Doolittle@east.sun.com>
The road numbers on the racing locomotive in the opening scene are reversed, indicating the film has been flipped. See more »
John L. Sullivan:
It's a funny thing how everything keeps shoving me back to Hollywood or Beverly Hills, or this monstrosity we're riding in. Almost like, like gravity as if some force were saying, 'Get back where you belong. You don't belong out here in real life, you phony you.!'... Maybe there's a universal law that says, 'Stay put. As you are, so shall you remain.' Maybe that's why tramps are always in trouble. They don't vote. They don't pay taxes. They violate the law of nature... But nothing is gonna stop...
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In the opening credits, the Paramount logo is depicted as a seal on a package wrapped in brown paper. The package is opened, revealing a book with the title of the movie. The pages are turned to show the credits. See more »
This is one of those films I keep rating higher each time I watch it. At first I thought it was just "fair" and, frankly, overrated, but I don't think so now. I especially would recommend seeing this on the Criterion DVD version to get the best picture available. I'm not plugging that company because I think their discs are overpriced, but they do a great job giving you the best transfer of these classics you'll ever find and it made this film even better.
The story is very different: one that suddenly turns 180 degrees in the last segment. After a more lighthearted combination of drama and humor through much of the story, the film gets surprisingly rough in the last 20 minutes and is not always fun to watch and the leading man, Joel McCrea, goes through some very, very tough times.
This is one of Veronica Lake's more appealing roles and, although not a beautiful women, she's intriguing enough - especially with her fabulous long blonde hair - to make me glad I have at least one sharp-looking film of her.
Overall, this Preston Sturges-directed movie is good stuff and a classic film that deservedly still has a solid reputation.
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