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Zachary Scott runs into Dane Clark's competition for Janis Paige
"Her Kind of Man" (1946) has the attractively rapid pacing, liveliness, sound quality and music that are typical of Warner Brothers films of this period. This is not for them a major production, but it's still fairly strong even if not top notch. The acting almost puts it into a higher bracket.
The story and screenplay are a crime-noir entry. The most noir character is that of Zachary Scott. He plays a canny gambler who runs a stake into enough money to finance a club with a casino room. He cuts some legal corners. He has an ambivalent relationship with Janis Paige, loving her but also using her and being indifferent to her personal ambitions and successes as a singer and possible Broadway star. It's only when faced with competition for her from columnist Dane Clark that he moves to marry her. Paige, who is tremendously vivacious, has a rather thankless part. She's hooked on Scott for the most part and accepts his control over her contract. Her songs were dubbed and lacked any semblance of jazz feeling.
We can read into the story the darker behaviors that it is showing. Still, one gets the feeling that the writers didn't go the full distance in exploiting and dramatically showing us the possibilities of the relationships in this picture. They gave Scott a muscleman (Harry Lewis) as an assistant but didn't show how Scott might have been using him to further his ambitions. George Tobias did a nice job as an on-again off-again partner of Scott who was married to Scott's sister, Faye Emerson. But somehow that angle and conflicts also seemed watered down. Ms. Emerson got to lecture Scott once on his cutting corners but that was about it. The movie has a tentative quality.
Scott clearly has some issues with getting his way and with police, and he goes into extreme actions by the end of the story that do not seem well-motivated. They do, however, allow for good noir atmosphere and tragedy.
Definitely watchable for a strong cast and especially Scott, but do not expect too much in the way of strongly developed dramatic conflicts.
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