Wealthy socialite Elizabeth Flagg is courted by persistent Michael McLain, despite her protests that she is a married woman. McLain is just charming enough to attract Elizabeth into a ... See full summary »
Snobbish attorney Charles 'Beauty' Steele loses his wife due to his drinking and his heirs at the same time that his brother-in-law absconds with funds belonging to one of Steele's clients.... See full summary »
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In The Ruling Voice, Walter Huston gets to play both of his specialties: a father and a charming villain. I've seen 26 of his movies, and in almost all of them he's played a dad! He's the head of a racketeering organization, but when he reveals his occupation to his innocent daughter, Loretta Young, she's ashamed and afraid of him. Oh, the hurt on Walter Huston's brow! He's such a powerful actor; he's credited as the man who started the racketeering business and has ordered terrible things to the opposition, but when Loretta hurts his feelings, he looks so sad and tender, it makes you want to cry.
Loretta is engaged to David Manners, whose character is named Dick Cheney, which provides a chuckle whenever he's mentioned. Besides that character's name, there's nothing funny about this movie. It's a family drama, with Walter trying to repair his relationship with his daughter at the heart of it. Naturally, I'm on Walter's side. Why can't Loretta respect her father's hard work and realize he loves her more than anything else in the world? Doesn't she know how charming and handsome he is, and how deeply she can hurt him?
Doris Kenyon appreciates him, and they share a few scenes together that sparkle with conflicting chemistry. "Well, there goes the devil," he quips as he leaves the room, an ironic foresight to a role he'd play ten years later. Walter Huston fans should check this one out; make it a double-feature with Night Court for a thrilling evening.
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