A newspaper man, his ignored fiancée, and his former employee a down on his luck reporter hatch an elaborate scheme to turn a false news story into the truth, to stop a high-society woman from suing for libel.
Nick and Nora head to Nick's hometown of Sycamore Springs to spend some time with his parents. His father, a prominent local physician, was always a bit disappointed with Nick's choice of profession in particular and his lifestyle in general. With Nick's arrival however the towns folk, including several of the local criminal element, are convinced that he must be there on a case despite his protestations that he's just there for rest and relaxation. When someone is shot dead on his doorstep however, Nick finds himself working on a case whether he wants to or not. Written by
When Brogan meets Nick's parents for the first time, Nick introduces them as "Mother and Dad". Brogan then refers to Nick's father as Dr. Charles. Having never met, Brogan would not know that Nick's father is a doctor. See more »
The Old Oaken Bucket
Lyrics by Samuel Woodworth
Music by George F. Kiallmark
Performed by William Powell
[Powell sings the first line of the song then continues with "Deep in the Heart of Texas"] See more »
Hands down, the best mystery and BIGGEST surprise ending in the series. The jokes and repartee are first class, lots of excellent supporting roles and by keeping a tight rein on the 'Thin Man Formula' it keeps everything fresh. You've got just enough drinking jokes (Nick's on the wagon because they're visiting his folks) but the scenes when his dad thinks he's drunk make up for it. Mercifully, they left Nick, Jr. at home - family stuff hurts the chemistry of Nick and Nora more than anything. Also,there is exactly the right amount of Asta. And of course, as everyone suspects, Asta is their 'real' child.
Not as many rough characters interacting with Nick in this one, but Nora herself inadvertently lapsing into criminal lingo as she tells the story about 'Stinky Davis' to her staid in-laws is even better! Also, you got the wonderful Edward Brophy, who specialized in comic gangster roles, posing as as the most improbable of 'greeting card salesmen' - his 'made up shop talk' is hilarious. And the great Anne Revere (later black-listed) acts to the hilt in a small but juicy dramatic role - you'd swear that 'Red Annie' was doing Brecht! I dare you to find one minute of Anne Revere on screen in ANY film in which she was not TOTALLY mesmerizing.
Director Thorpe was not quite 'One-Shot Van Dine' the best Thin Man director but he seldom puts his foot wrong. Boring camera placements and indifferent staging if you care about that, but when your listening to Nick and Nora sparring you don't really notice.
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