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Marv needs money. His unemployed dad is so poor that he makes Marv give up half his last six bucks so they can both go on three-dollar dates; he's just lost his scholarship after getting caught writing a term paper for Betty, the prettiest (and only) girl in his class; and Betty herself has told him he doesn't stand a chance with her unless he can give her what she wants most: money, money, money. But Marv has mob ties and Marv knows where to find a million dollars cash... Written by
I'd never heard of actor Pittman, but it turns out he was quite a talented, though ill-fated, young guy. Here he goes from painfully shy to confidently assertive in abrupt, but equally convincing, fashion. I just wish he and the rest of the cast were better served by the script that loses its way about halfway through.
Almost matching Pittman in the talent department is actress Aldridge. Her teenage vixen is enough to send Joan Crawford into fits of jealousy. Betty (Aldridge) is so good at using her wiles to manipulate the hapless Marv (Pittman) in the first part that I thought the movie would be exceptional for a drive-in cheapie.
Now, had the screenplay stayed at this sensitive level, namely the ordinary-looking Marv yearning for self-respect amid sneering peers, the potential for something sublime was great. However the script veers off into a sudden and wildly implausible tangent of Marv leading a gang of criminals on a million-dollar heist, ending in as phony a shoot-out as I've seen. Too bad, because the rest of the cast, with the exception of an awkward Veit (Vince), is also unusually good for a cheap production.
In my little book, this was a missed opportunity, a teenage film that could have distinguished itself from the many other drive-in specials of the time. Nonetheless, I now know who Tom Pittman is, and in spades.
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