Although Charley Kying has owned a casino for fifteen years, on one rainy night events and people seem to converge and threaten his family home and second home, his gambling house. After a doctor secretly diagnoses him with a severe heart condition and recommends that if he continues to subject himself to the daily stress of a professional gambler, he hasn't long to live. Later that day he's made to realize that he's been neglecting his faithful wife for years and abdicated his duties as father to his son, who resents his father's unsavory reputation and rebuffs his interest in attending that night's prom. Charley's weakling brother-in-law, who sponges off him by freeloading at home and cheating him out of petty cash as croupier, agrees to conspire with rival gamblers to cheat Charley out of thousands. Among the others who add stress to what would seem to be Charley's last night in the casino are a rich former girlfriend who proposes they renew their relationship, an old nemesis who's... Written by
This postwar movie was one of Clark Gable's last for the studio that made him a star--MGM. Gable is older, perhaps wiser, but here fully capable of playing this role with all of the insight into life that his 49 years have earned him. One has the feeling that after the great '30s roles such as Rhett Butler, after the death of Carole Lombard, and after the war, Gable was perfect for the world-weary professional gambler that he plays here--the part fits him like a glove. And he's surrounded by great character actors such as Frank Morgan, Lewis Stone, and Mary Astor, to name a few.
I don't agree with the other review that said this was a totally unrealistic, if watchable film: I grew up in a small city that had a gambling house similar to the one depicted here. It was well run, had many regulars, and was quite well known to the authorities. In any case, this movie is well worth a view, if you're not a Gable fan, you might be after viewing this one.
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