Ordinary man-on-the-street Arthur Ferguson Jones leads a regularly life, but one day, everything changes; he's mistaken for criminal Mannion and is arrested. The resemblance is so striking, the police give him a special pass to avoid a similar mistake. The real Mannion sees an opportunity to steal the pass, and chaos results.Written by
Col Needham <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Direct references to drug use were forbidden after the adoption of the "Ccde," but here the filmmakers must have not have understood it when a character was referred to a being "coked up." See more »
When Jones returns to his home; Mannion is waiting for him and is holding a pocket watch with his left hand. But on the next immediate cut, Mannion is now holding the watch with his right hand. See more »
I saw this movie a long time ago as a teenager during a Edward G. Robinson retrospective. It was the one that stuck in my mind, and I never forgot it. Now I have it on videotape and watch it regularly, it stands multiple viewing very well.
The Whole Town's Talking is one of those perfect little movies. Everything falls into place the acting, the pace, the timing of the jokes, the dialog. Even the set design is fabulous, it was basically the big, bright office space in which the good guy Robinson plays slaves" that was unforgettable to me. The movie boasts an assortment of caricature like characters like no other movie I know, beside Robinson I would like to mention Jean Arthur, of course, and the two funny little guys, Donald Meek and, even more memorable, Etienne Girardot as the pedantic office overseer who urges Robinson to get on with the Macintyre account.
In its social comment The Whole Town's Talking reminds me of the work of Preston Sturgess. Mentionable are the media hype about a famous gangster which is really over the top (it's up there with His Girl Friday in this aspect) and the incompetence of the police force which is unable to deal with the gangster and even less with the media and is presented as a helpless and clueless organization. So the movie still has some actuality.
Movie buffs who look at John Ford as an auteur" may be disappointed. The Whole Town's Talking is very much a product of the studio system. But it amply shows what great things that system was able to accomplish at times!
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