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Poor Red Jones gets fired from every job he tries. His fiancée gives him one last chance to make good when he becomes a Fuller Brush man. His awkward attempts at sales are further complicated when one of his customers is murdered and he becomes the prime suspect. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <email@example.com>
With the making of THE FULLER BRUSH MAN, Edward Small/Columbia Pictures,(1948) the period of the global hostilities of World War II is officially put to rest by Hollywood.The situations, the humor, the settings are all pointing to the theme of making a living and getting on with the newly won PEACE. There are no references to hostilities,rationing, the draft, nor any 'New Deal' Federal programs.The only connection to the previous wartime situation is the plot line involving the war surplus industry and the crooked individuals (in the story) fraudulently manipulating it.
This was probably thought to be a 'Small' picture in more ways than one by MGM, the big studio that lent out young star under contract, Red Skelton, for the lead;perhaps much in the same way that they had lent Clark Gable to Columbia & Frank Capra for 1934's IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT. While it's true that Red did not come back to his home studio with the Oscar as did Gable (Best Actor),Capra(Best Director),Claudette Colbert (Best Actress), Robert Riskin (Best Writing Adaptation) and the Movie(Best Picture) did, but he did give a comic performance that, in this writer's opinion topped his previous outings at MGM.
Mr.Skelton had starred in the 3 comedies, WHISTLING IN THE DARK, WHISTLING IN DIXIE and WHISTLING IN BROOKLYN, all with the same Director (S.Sylvan Simon), but was never used better or was not funnier on the screen.
The film, like the previously mentioned Skelton vehicles, has no pretensions about it.It's there to make us laugh. And it succeeds in a most thorough manner,bringing in post war elements such as having to wait for automobiles and home appliances to be made, but placing orders first.The coming on the scene of Television is included. The highlight of the film is a cartoon-like chase toward the end of the picture.(As silly as it may be, my wife and myself were in stitches over it!) Otherwise the story is bright, cheerful,hopeful and looks toward much happier, more prosperous days following the great World War II.
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