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Dave Joslin, the managing editor of a big-city newspaper, is demoted and moved to the Miss Lonely Hearts column-writing department by the newspaper's publisher, J. B. Grennell, because Joslin refuses to desist in printing stories linking a gangster, Matthew Keever, to a murder. But Joslin, aided by Kit Williams, a newspaper woman with whom he is in love, investigate the murder case on their own time and, after several narrow escapes from death, finally solve it. Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
From a literal standpoint the title for this film seems somewhat irrelevant, since the house across the street only involves the opening sequence. But from a figurative viewpoint, the title is apt, indicating that most urban Americans don't really know much about what is going on across the street from where they live, crime, murder, shakedowns, and such. Across the street could be across the nation.
Dave Joslin (Wayne Morris) is the managing editor for the local newspaper, involved in attacking a crime syndicate running the city headed by boss Keever (Bruce Bennett). When a key witnessed is murdered by Keever's hit-man right in front of a stakeout, Joslin writes a scathing editorial about the ineffectiveness of the police department in handling the mob. Joslin's boss, J.B. Grennell (Alan Hale, Sr.), running scared, orders Joslin to back off. When Joslin refuses, J.B. reassigns him to the Bewildered Hearts office replacing Joslin's lady love, Kit Williams (Janis Paige), who is much obliged to be reassigned. (One wonders if this flick wasn't the basis for the early television sitcom starring Peter Lawford and Marcia Henderson, "Dear Phoebe," where the advice columnist is a man.) While doing his duties as advice to the lovelorn columnist, Joslin stumbles onto a situation that is connected to the mob hit. He and Kit begin a merry chase that leads them into dark corners, near-death escapes, and lots of other fun and mayhem before pulling all the loose ends together.
Wayne Morris is always a joy to watch. Janis Paige doesn't get to sing and dance, but does get to turn in a good performance as assistant sleuth. The rest of the cast is great, especially James Mitchell as Marty Bremer. "The House Across the Street" is basically a comedy-thriller, giving the audience a fair run for its money.
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