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Slip (Leo Gorcey) narrates that he and Sach (Huntz Hall) were copy boys on the 'Daily Chronicle" when their police-detective friend, Gabe Moreno ('Gabriel Dell(I)')was shot during a holdup by The Loop Gang, and another officer killed. During their investigation, Slip accidentally wins the respect of gangster "Angles" (Mickey Knox) when he gets out of a prearranged police pickup. The Loop Gang pull another robbery and mobster Bertie Spangler (Pepe Hern) for bungling a job. Slip then realizes that "Angles" and his mob are responsible for the crime wave. Through "Angles" and "Miami" ('Richard Benedict'), Slip and Sach meet Carver (Edward Ryan), real leader of the gang, and his vampish girl friend Vickie ('Jean Dean')who immediately "goes for" Slip. His pals Butch (Benny Bartlett), Chuck (David Gorcey and "Whitey (William 'Billy' Benedict) dress like gangsters and convince Carver they are mobsters, and malt-shop owner Louie Bernard Gorcey)pretends he is their contact man. The Bowery Boys ... Written by
Les ASdams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Returning to work at New York City's "Daily Chronicle" (see "News Hounds" for an unconnected earlier stint), "The Bowery Boys" get involved in exposing a ring of mobsters, after policeman chum Gabriel Dell (as Gabe Moreno) is hospitalized in a shooting. Journalistic leader Leo Gorcey (as "Slip" Mahoney) is the newspaper's "chief copy boy" - and aspiring investigative reporter. Hapless Huntz Hall (as Horace Debussy "Sach" Jones) is his apprentice. William "Billy" Benedict (as Whitey), Benny "Bennie" Bartlett (as Butch), and David Gorcey (as Chuck) are streetwise paperboys.
This "Naked City"-influenced satire starts off well, but loses steam several times during the running time. The startling opening works well, with Mr. Gorcey awakening in an alley, where he and Mr. Hall have been uncharacteristically beaten to a pulp. From there, Gorcey "narrates" the loopy, nonsensical detective story. Director Jean Yarbrough manages the tight budget reasonably well.
In early film appearances, youngsters Joseph Turkel (as John Mutton), Mickey Knox (as Angles Carson), Richard Benedict (as Miami), and Pepe Hern (as Bertie Spangler) make especially good pool hall hustler impressions. You're likely to forget the plot entirely, later in the running time, when bookworm boy wonder Edward "Eddie" Ryan (as Mr. Carver) and sexy girlfriend Jean Dean (as Vickie Darwell) enter the picture.
Watch for the scene where Mr. Ryan sadistically slaps Mr. Turkel's face, followed by Ms. Dean's sexually-charged entrance; in a dress which fills the movie screen like few others, Dean definitely gives the film a lift. Happily, the often underutilized Bowery supporting cast helps round up the forgettable, frayed storyline, with Bernard Gorcey (as "Big Louie") joining "Whitey the Whip", "Chuck the Chiller", and "Butch the Butcher".
***** Angels in Disguise (9/9/49) Jean Yarbrough ~ Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Joseph Turkel
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