Sach is informed that he is the heir to the fortune of a high society mogul. When he arrives for the reading of the will, he discovers that the real heir is a young boy, and that Sach's ... See full summary »
The Bowery Boys head west to clear Louie of an old murder charge that he had killed his gold-mine partner. Sach has the map to the gold mine painted on his back, and Blackjack McCoy has him... See full summary »
The Bowery Boys--Slip, Sach, Bobby, Whitey & Chuck--start their own exterminating service, and get a job which takes them to a spooky old abandoned mansion in the middle of the night. ... See full summary »
Chuck, a reporter for The Blade newspaper, gets beaten up while trying to get a story on prison corruption, and the rest of the Bowery Boys, Slip, Sach, and Butch, get themselves arrested ... See full summary »
Sach is informed that he is the heir to the fortune of a high society mogul. When he arrives for the reading of the will, he discovers that the real heir is a young boy, and that Sach's birth certificate had been forged by family members who don't want the youngster to inherit all the money. Sach and the gang determine to expose the relatives' scheme and see that the boy gets what is rightfully his. Written by
The screenplay was mistakenly nominated for an Academy Award when the Academy nominating committee confused the title with the Bing Crosby / Grace Kelly musical, High Society (1956), released the following year. The writers graciously declined the nomination. See more »
'High Society', starring the Bowery Boys, is a bit more serious than most of their films, but otherwise extremely typical of their output ... except for one bizarre detail. The script of this Bowery Boys movie was nominated for an Oscar. Yes, it's true! The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences actually listed this movie on the 1956 Oscars ballot to receive an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay!
There's a catch, of course. Like every other Bowery Boys movie, 'High Society' got an extremely limited release (to road houses and neighbourhood cinemas), and then it vanished into oblivion pending its release to television. A few months later, MGM released a big-budget musical with a Cole Porter score, starring Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra and Grace Kelly. This movie was ALSO titled 'High Society'. (Can you see where this is heading?) Several members of the Academy rather ignorantly nominated this MGM musical for Best Original Screenplay. But 'High Society' (the Crosby-Sinatra one) was doubly ineligible for this award, as it was a remake of the Cary Grant-Katharine Hepburn film 'The Philadelphia Story', which in turn was adapted from Philip Barry's stage play. Any Oscar nominations for this movie's script should have been in the category of Best Screenplay Adaptation.
On the other hand, 'High Society' (the Bowery Boys movie) DID have an original story ... terrible, but original. As bad as it was, this movie (unlike the Crosby-Sinatra musical) was eligible for the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. When all those nominations came rolling in, some misguided schlub in the back room at the Academy allocated them to the Bowery Boys movie. I'd like to have seen the look on the faces of the four hacks who wrote this movie, when they got word that their Bowery Boys opus was up for an Oscar!
Now here's where it gets well and truly bizarre. Many Hollywood screenwriters have a perverse sense of humour. With a Bowery Boys movie on the ballot for best screenplay, there was a genuine risk that a significant number of screenwriters in the Academy would wilfully vote for this film, just to spite the Academy and watch some obscure hacks step up to accept the award! Immense pressure was put on Edward Bernds and Elwood Ullman to withdraw their script from nomination. Alas, both of these poor deluded scribblers had faint hopes of some day winning an Oscar legitimately, and they didn't want to anger the Academy by accepting an Oscar they'd won under false pretences. With great regret, Bernd and Ullman withdrew their Bowery Boys epic from consideration ... and never again in their careers were they within shouting distance of an Oscar.
I really wish that this movie had won. Unfortunately, 'High Society' (this one) isn't even a particularly good movie even by Bowery Boys standards. Bowery Boys fans will be disappointed to encounter fewer gags than usual here, and more sentiment. I'll rate this movie 2 points out of 10, plus a counterfeit Oscar. (I've got a crateful of counterfeit Oscars in my cellar, just next to the dungeon.)
15 of 21 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?