5.9/10
30
5 user

The Big Flash (1932)

Would-be photographer Harry gets his big chance when a newspaper wants pictures of a prominent gangster and his girl. Harry and another photographer first visit the gangster's girl, and ... See full summary »

Director:

Arvid E. Gillstrom

Writers:

Bobby Vernon (story) (as Robert Vernon), Frank Griffin (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Harry Langdon ... Harry
Vernon Dent ... Klaus
Ruth Hiatt ... Betty, Hinkle's Secretary
Lita Chevret ... Nadine, Brick's Girl
Matthew Betz ... Brick Dugan (as Mathew Betz)
King Baggot ... Hinkle - Daily News Editor
Jack Grey Jack Grey ... Hinkle's Assistant
Helen Foster ... Fifi - Nadine's Maid
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Storyline

Would-be photographer Harry gets his big chance when a newspaper wants pictures of a prominent gangster and his girl. Harry and another photographer first visit the gangster's girl, and then wait at the scene of an expected robbery. But before they can get the pictures they want, they must first distract a policeman whose presence would otherwise deter the gangster from appearing. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

two reeler | See All (1) »

Genres:

Short | Comedy

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 November 1932 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
Harry proves he's not a flash in the pan
4 September 2009 | by hte-trasmeSee all my reviews

This Harry Langdon short for Educational Pictures is quite funny. The plot and scenario, though, are only so-so: Harry becomes a photographer's assistant through a mix-up and has to takes pictures of a gangster's girlfriend. What makes it is that Arvid E. Gilstrom's direction lingers long enough to let Harry do his thing and be funny. He's at the top of his game here and plays every gag wonderfully, constantly throwing in the subtle touches that made him a cut above most comedians of the day (for instance, those spams of running in place, trying to get the policeman to come with him). Directing this short with fast "comedy" pacing would have made it lose a lot of what makes its gags work.

There's actually something wonderfully natural and innocent about the way Harry Langdon delivers his lines. I think his piping, hesitant voice works perfectly with his fidgeting, babyish screen character and shorts like this one prove that he was still making successful comedies into the sound era, despite some people's belief that his career effectively ended around 1928. He works very well with his frequent costar at Educational Vernon Dent, and as another reviewer pointed out, they suggest almost a comedy team at this point.

A lot of the gag ideas here are very good too; there's no way of knowing how much Langdon himself contributed. I love his attempts at flirting early in the film. Overall a good, solid, funny, Langdon talkie.


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