The story for this Bowery Boys entry was written by Jan Grippo, who was Leo Gorcey's agent and became his producing partner for the Bowery Boys films. This was the only story by Grippo to be produced. See more »
Leo Gorcey (as Slip Mahoney) and "The Bowery Boys" are in Louie's "Sweet Shop" when mysterious hypnotist Ian Keith (as Raymond) enters, to buy some cigars. Commiserating about "Mr. Hex", the "happy hooligans" go to a nickel machine and listen to a song from their favorite vocalist, gorgeous Gale Robbins (as Gloria Williams). After listening to Ms. Robbins' "A Love Song to Remember", Mr. Gorcey, Huntz Hall (as Sach Sullivan), Bobby Jordan (as Bobby), William "Billy" Benedict (as Whitey), and David Gorcey (as Chuck) learn the blonde songstress has fallen on hard times, due to an ailing mother.
To help Robbins raise money for her mother (and career), Gorcey and company enter a $2,500 boxing contest, with Mr. Hall chosen (railroaded, actually) as the Bowery team's designated fighter. After Mr. Keith teaches Gorcey "the inner mysteries of the mesmeric art," he is able to hypnotize Hall into believing he is a winning strongman; consequently, Hall easily wins his boxing matches. Then, criminal forces employ both Gabriel Dell (as Gabe Moreno), and their own "Evil-Eye" Sammy Cohen (as Fagin) to halt Hall's winning ways, and take the $2,500 cash prize.
The hypnotist plot suits the series' comedy; and, the film gets off to a very good start with Keith and the cast practicing Hocus-Pocus; it's a nicely staged, and performed, scene. Hall has a "Shadow Boxing" scene to watch for, and he dominates the story, also. And, Robbins is a fine vocalist. Finally, Gorcey explains why he's called "Slip"; and, amusingly, he calls Butterworth "Butter-ball". The plot gets a little too wound up, but you do get Gabriel Dell and a bunch of engaging character actors in the mix.
****** Mr. Hex (11/9/46) William Beaudine ~ Huntz Hall, Leo Gorcey, Ian Keith, Gabriel Dell
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