George Raft, playing himself, recalls his days on Broadway, where he acquired a reputation as a great dancer--and also one as a brawler, a ladies man and an associate of some of the city's most notorious gangsters.
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A. Edward Sutherland,
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George Raft, hoofer at the Paradise Club, shares his ambitions with his dancing partner, Billie Moore. She is also the quarry of Stave Crandall, a big-shot racketeer and bootlegger. When Steve bumps of "Scar" Edwards, from whom he has hijacked four truckloads of, the Paradise, where the shooting occurred, becomes the focal point of interest of Police Detective Dan McCorn. Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
"Broadway" is a semi-biopic/gangster movie in which the stars align and everything works. It has all the elements of a hit movie; good idea, good script, good cast, good music, good pacing. It is listed as a musical but the musical is almost incidental; the movie takes place backstage at a theater (which is also a speakeasy) and it contains a couple of old songs for the chorus girls to perform. George Raft tells the story in flashback, as he visits New York and reminisces about the old days, particularly about his gangster involvement.
I don't care for George Raft. He was a wooden actor and had an unattractive persona and appearance. But here I feel he did his best work, even creating a little sympathy for his character as well as showing his dancing feet - remember, he is a middle-aged guy playing a young guy. He was better here than in "Souls At Sea". The picture gets a big lift from Broderick Crawford as the heavy, and his acting here rivals his AA performance in "All The King's Men". Pat O'Brien plays a 'flatfoot'(no surprise) and comic relief comes in the form of SZ Sakall and Edward Brophy. Janet Blair and Anne Gwynne were very pretty in slight roles; too bad their careers weren't more prolific.
The picture moves at a good pace, and I really can't think of a drawback or a valid complaint. Thoroughly entertaining from start to finish, a quick 90 minutes. It was shown at Cinevent, Columbus,O. 5/12.
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