Zany comedy that doesn't match great screwball films
There's no doubt that this is a funny movie. It's madcap mayhem much of the time. It has a plot that ties it all together. And, it has a very good cast, all of whom do well in their parts. So, why do I give it only six stars? Well, for starters, it's very zany and funny at times – but not laughably funny most of the time. The ingredients for the screwball comedy are there in spades – the love triangle. But it isn't really a triangle because E.E. Horton's Howard Rogers "masterfully" became engaged to Ann Sothern's Toni Pemberton. She doesn't love the guy and there's no conflict between two suitors. And, there is very little comedy between the two leads – Sothern and Jack Haley's Henry MacMorrow.
What distinguishes the great screwball comedies is the interplay between the two leads. The exchanges of witty lines, the riotously funny give and take between the two, the hilarious mishaps and slapstick. There is none of that in this film. After a short encounter in their first meeting, the two leads become friends with a common pursuit. Now it's just a romance with them. The film does have many weird characters, and they have some lines that strain at humor. But mostly, they are engaged in individual eccentricities that are funny but that soon grow tiresome.
"Danger – Love at Work" has the feel of watching a variety show with one comedy skit – or attempted one – after another. The incidents and scenes are amusing, but that's it. A couple of other reviewers have noted that it would have been a better production with a top-line director of the day. That might have been so, but only with a major rewrite of the screenplay. It has to start with the screenplay, and this one doesn't have what it takes to make great comedy.
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