Out of the Blue (1947) Poster

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Forgotten Screwball Laughfest
churei7 May 2002
If any other studio but Eagle Lion had released OUT OF THE BLUE, it would still be listed as one of the best of the zany screwball comedies that still were being produced in the 40's. What is even more interesting is that all of the main stars play AGAINST TYPE, and the result is not only funny but a pleasant and welcome surprise...even today. A madcap comedy, OUT OF THE BLUE focuses on a henpecked husband, the ditzy lady he picks up in a bar, and assorted others who provide ammunition for a comedy of mistaken identity, blackouts, suspicious women and henpecked husbands. The most wonderful surprise of all is the hilarious performance by Ann Dvorak as the tipsy and zonked-out cause of all of the fracas. She is a riot, a shocker for fans who knew her only and always as a DRAMATIC actress. Another key surprise is George Brent as a put-upon hubby of a domineering wife, played expertly by Carole Landis. Add Turhan Bey as a sophisticate (!!!) and Virginia Mayo as his current lady friend. Leigh Jason is the director, and his work, too, is "out of the blue". This film should not be a forgotten little gem... it has been available, briefly, on VHS. Try to catch it.
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moondog-825 December 2008
What makes this movie so remarkable is that all the actors are cast against their type. Romantic lead George Brent plays a henpecked hubby in this film. Glamor gal Carole Landis plays a prissy mouse of a housewife. Turhan Bey doesn't wear a turban in this film, but plays a cool and wise-cracking New York man-about-town. And drama queen Ann Dvorak plays a screwball drunk lady with more than one screw loose. It's a gem. Then add to this the remarkable supporting cast, a script with some zingers I can still remember after not seeing this for 40 years. And it gets great Cool Points for having legendary jazz artist Hadda Brooks play the piano and sing in this film (she also performed in the Bogart / Grahame film IN A LONELY PLACE; and had one of the first regular TV shows ever broadcast in Los Angeles in the late 1940s).
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A corpse is a corpse of course of course, unless, that is, it's a dummy corpse!
mark.waltz31 May 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I'm used to seeing Ann Dvorak in dramatic roles like "Scarface', "Three on a Match" and "A Life of Her Own", all of where she met dramatic endings. But in this 1947 farce, she's both very much alive as well as the model for a dummy, made to resemble her corpse after she passes out drunk at the luxurious Fifth Avenue apartment of staid George Brent. Rather than being barefoot in the park (as this is right off of Washington Square), she's hiding out in the next door neighbor's apartment, playboy Turhan Bey's. He's getting even with neighbor Brent over his huge dog's behavior. Brent is married to clueless Carole Landis, while Bey's latest flame (Virginia Mayo) gets her fill of getting rid of bodies and eventually Bey.

The wacky performance by Dvorak is something that Joan Davis might have done, and it's a nice change to see the other side of a usually very serious actress. As the socialite who came out at 38 and hasn't returned home, she's an absolute hoot. Brent is a great reactor, and suave Bey seems to be having a ball instigating the prank. Elizabeth Patterson and Julia Dean are funny in bit parts as nosy spinster neighbors. Flame, a popular German Shepard, is well trained as Brent's bone loving dog. The laughs are fairly frequent and often over the top, but never too ridiculous in spite of the outrageous situation. I've seen several films about some not quite dead bodies, and this could be the funniest.
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Madcap Comedy with Contrasting Performances
l_rawjalaurence26 July 2016
Ostensibly set in Greenwich Village but actually never leaving the confines of Eagle-Lion's studios, OUT OF THE BLUE's basic plot-line adumbrates better-known comedies such as THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH and THE ODD COUPLE. Arthur Earthleigh (George Brent), a put-upon husband, has to fend for himself while his spouse Mae (Carole Landis) goes away for the weekend. He encounters serial drunk Olive (Ann Dvorak) in a club, takes her back home but finds his adulterous dreams frustrated by a combination of conscience and drunkenness. Meanwhile his neighbor David (Turhan Bey) appears to be continuing his career as a serial womanizer with dog-breeder Deborah (Virginia Mayo), but his romantic dreams are frustrated by Olive.

Leigh Jason's production is distinguished by contrasting performances. Once Warner Brothers' leading man but now sporting middle-aged spread, Brent is quite happy to play the well-meaning but clueless husband led a merry amatory dance by Olive, apparently unable to cope with rapidly changing situations. Turhan Bey acts the sophisticate, dressed in a white tuxedo and showing his perfect manners to Mayo - while successfully seducing her - but even he has no real answer to Olive's machinations. Ann Dvorak enjoys herself with a madcap role as Olive, as she sups vast quantities of brandy and flops lifelessly down on the sofa in a series of drunken stupors.

Playing a couple of old women reminiscent of those in ARSENIC AND OLD LACE (released three years previously), Julia Dean and Elizabeth Patterson have great fun playing cards but showing far more interest in their neighbors' affairs. It's clear that in this tight-knit Greenwich Village society - where an unidentified murder is on the prowl - everything that happens is everyone else's business.

Needless to say the comedy ends happily with Brent reasserting patriarchal authority over his wife Mae, while Deborah establishes mastery (or should it be mistressy) over Turhan Bey's David, even though such authority is only skin-deep.
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Out of the grave
AAdaSC23 August 2017
Ann Dvorak (Olive) is one of those people you really must avoid in life. Not because she likes a drink – that bit is quite fun – but because she never goes away. Even when she is dead, it would seem.

This is a comedy that makes use of screwball comedy set pieces. It's all about misinterpretations. And it's pretty funny in parts. Some of artist Turhan Bey's (David) reactions are expertly dialogued, especially when a dead body turns up on his balcony and he discovers what has actually happened.

The director could have made more of singer Hadda Brooks. If she's going to appear in a film, then give her a full song. Ann Dvorak takes the attention away during Hadda's scene and we don't really want to hear Dvorak singing the title song "Out of the Blue".

You have to be in the mood for this type of comedy and if the mood takes you, it is quite a good example. I'll be keeping onto it for a future viewing when in the mood. It's got a pretty good cast and is one of Carole Landis's last films.
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How many times can Olive die in one movie?!
MartinHafer23 January 2016
This film stars George Brent, Turhan Bey, Virginia Mayo, Ann Dvorak and Carol Landis. The Earthleigh family (Brent and Landis) are a couple very annoying people. Mrs. Earthleigh is highly annoyed by everything and is as much fun as jock itch. Mr. Earthleigh is a wimp and puts up with his wife's bully behavior towards him as well as their neighbor, Mr Galleo (Bey). She insists that Galleo MUST get rid of his dog and sics her husband and their lawyer on the guy.

One day, Mrs. Earthleigh leaves to go on a trip. When she's gone, her husband meets a very strange alcoholic, Olive (Dvorak) and she follows him home and WON'T leave no matter how hard he tries. Eventually, she appears to have died and falls onto Galleo's property! Well, Earthleigh can't find this narcoleptic alcoholic...and later Galleo decides to pretend he found this lady DEAD on his terrace...and enlists Earthleigh to 'dump the body'. Galleo knows there is no body but figures this is a chance to blackmail Earthleigh into dropping his lawsuit and letting him keep his dog. What's next? Well, Olive appears to die several more times and suddenly lots of people are being accused of killing her!

This is a cute little comedy and I might have scored this very original film higher had Dvorak's performance been a bit less broad and silly. Subtle definitely would have worked better...but it still worked and is a cute little situation comedy. Worth seeing.
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Ann Dvorak is the real star of this film
mysterv1 February 2016
Wishy washy title but saw that it was billed as screwball comedy and had gotten some good reviews on IMDb so it ended up as my pick for 'movie night' in our home. I was not familiar with Ann Dvorak who was getting secondary billing in this movie but once she was introduced to the story the movie picked up... and she stole every scene. I want to see more of her in comedy films and hope that there are some. George Brent deserves some kudos also as the main foil in this screwball comedy. He did a nice job. If you have a chance to watch this film then do it. The opening scene is weak but it really picks up after that and does not stop until credits are ready to roll at the end.
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Out Of The Blue Too Clever For Its Own Good
gerrythree30 December 2009
For 15 years, I had my laser disc copy of Out of the Blue stored away, plastic shrink wrap still on, with two Camelot Music price stickers on, one red Camelot logo above a $14.88 sell price, another black logo showing $5.99. Camelot used to have video and music stores in many malls in the Ft. Lauderdale, Florida area before it went out of business. I may have bought this laser at the Camelot store in the Broward Mall. The laser cardboard sleeve had a hole punched in the upper right hand corner, the mark of a remaindered LD. I finally got around to looking at this movie, and the movie is less than the sum of its parts.

The title credit for Out of the Blue identifies Bryan Foy in charge of production. Foy had been in charge of producing B movies for Warner Bros. until about 1941, when Jack Warner decided to make only A movies. Goodbye, Bryan, after 14 years your services are no longer wanted. But Foy remembered the stars at Warners he worked with, so he hired George Brent and the still very pretty Ann Dvorak to star in this 1947 movie that takes place mostly in Greenwich Village. The trouble is, Foy did not hire any of the Warner Brothers early 1930s screenplay writers to help rewrite the script, a lame affair involving a wife who vanishes, some snoopy neighbors and attempts at screwball comedy. The very limited movie budget Eagle-Lion provided meant cheap sets, few extras and mostly interior shots.

The early 1930s Warner Bros. movies were like capturing lightning in a bottle, very difficult to do. In 1947, RKO made a crime picture, Riffraff, with former Warner Bros. star Pat O'Brien playing a tough private detective. O'Brien had previously played a tough police detective in Warners' 1933 movie, Bureau of Missing Persons. RKO had one of the former Warner Bros. top stars, but that wasn't enough, just as with Out of the Blue.

Warner Bros. movies like Hey, Nellie! and Friends of Mr. Sweeney, both set in Greenwich Village, had their comedy aspects but they also provided a grim commentary to the Depression years. Both had subplots involving crooked politicians. All Out of the Blue has are good looking characters in search of a script.

I still cannot figure out why the Turhan Bey character breaks the speed limit while transporting a steamer trunk with what he thinks is a dead body in it. Naturally a motorcycle cop stops him to give him a speeding ticket. When asked, Bey tells the cop the trunk has a body in it, which the cop takes as a joke. How clever you Hollywood screenplay writers are. Out of the Blue has some fine actors in it who deserved better material. Hopefully, none of the actors' paychecks bounced.
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likeable black-and-white comedy
myriamlenys28 April 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Now that his wife is away for a few days, a henpecked husband tries to find some adventure and romance. Having picked up a perpetually drunk young lady called Olive, he takes her around to his apartment, For Friendship And More. The rendez-vous doesn't go as planned and when the man discovers that he has a corpse (or rather "corpse") on his hands, he plants Olive's body on the terrace of a neighbour he dislikes...

I recommend "Out of the Blue" to viewers who like a) German shepherd dogs b) silly hats c) snappy comebacks and witty dialogue d) funny performances by good actors e) all of the above. I do not recommend the movie to perfectionists who expect a plot to make perfect sense, all of the time : there are a few aspects here and there which require a kindly measure of indulgence. For instance, it is not entirely credible that the police, warned about the presence of a corpse lying on an apartment terrace, would inspect the apartment but not the terrace.

I gather the movie is based on a story by Vera Caspary, of "Bedelia" and "Laura" fame. This would mean an author indulging in an affectionate spoof of her own genre, to wit the crime thriller or mystery.

In real life, of course, people would be well advised not to keep a German or Belgian shepherd dog in an apartment on the tenth floor : these are not only active, energetic animals that need a lot of exercice, they are also fiendishly good at jumping fences and climbing walls. Alas, poor Rabelais, at least he reached the ripe old age of fourteen months...
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Mildly amusing!
JohnHowardReid5 May 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Copyright 27 October 1947 by Pathe Industries, Inc. A Bryan Foy Production for Eagle Lion Films, Inc. Produced at the studios of Eagle Lion Films, Hollywood, California. No New York release. U.S. release: 11 October 1947. Australian release through British Empire Films: 6 January 1949. Sydney release at the Lyceum: 3 December 1948. 7,895 feet. 87½ minutes.

SYNOPSIS: Two feuding neighbors, a dog, a wife, a girlfriend, a couple of spinster busybodies and a "body".

COMMENT: If it were not for Vera Caspary's name on the credits, no way would this strained, minor disappearing-body "comedy" make anyone's list of preferred films of the forties. Evidently the lady decided to try her hand at a comedy, a crime spoof. Unfortunately, Out of the Blue does not exploit a vein of caustic wit or sharp satire (cf. Laura), but is at best a mildly amusing domestic farce centering upon henpecked George Brent's efforts to rid his apartment of (a) the neighbor's dog; and (b) a rumpot interior decorator.

Fortunately, the rumpot is played by that very talented actress Ann Dvorak. Beautifully timed, her performance has just the right touch of nuttiness. Though she is fighting a constant battle against a script that lacks genuine wit or sparkle, she wins narrowly on points. Leigh Jason's lackluster direction is only intermittently helpful - in fact, its deft moments could be counted on the fingers of one hand: a couple of attractive high angle shots of the balconies; a whip pan from one balcony to the other; and most telling of all, an iris into Miss Dvorak registering Brent's surprise at finding her back in his apartment.

Brent himself tries awfully hard, but he is palpably miscast. Only someone with the quiet imbecility and weak-willed lack-of-authority of a Jimmy Stewart or preferably a Gary Cooper could have carried it off. Brent never approaches gaining audience sympathy, and his efforts to make up in screeching and sniggering what the dialogue so obviously lacks in flair are doomed to failure. And as for Turhan Bey (pronounced "two ron bay") ... As a villain he's okay, but as a leading man for Virginia Mayo, distinctly second-rate.

Virginia is not kindly treated by the ponderous direction either, and the flat photography does little justice to either her beautiful face or costumes.

Another victim of miscasting is Carole Landis who - would you believe? - is cast as a frump, neatness-neurotic housewife!

The film often has the appearance of a photographed stage play and was obviously lensed on a very moderate "A" budget.

All current TV prints have been duped from a worn projection print - in good condition aside from a few jumps at reel changes and the fact that someone has souvenired the Hadda Brooks song, "Out of the Blue". Running time is around 83 minutes.
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Good performances by all
jarrodmcdonald-118 October 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I watched this Eagle-Lion comedy yesterday on YouTube and thoroughly enjoyed it. The reason I had been wanting to check it out was because one of the stars, Carole Landis, was born in my hometown. I haven't seen all her movies yet, so I needed to check this one off the list. And it was certainly worth the time.

One of the user reviews I read here on the IMDb said the entire cast was playing against type..and I somewhat agree with that assessment. Aside from Carole who did a fabulous job as a domineering wife, there was another performer who stood out for me in this motion picture. It was Turhan Bey...he plays a Greenwich artistic type who has a succession of beautiful women parading through his apartment. One of them is shapely Virginia Mayo.

The other IMDb user jokingly commented that Turhan is virtually unrecognizable in this part without his customary turban, which he wore in several adventure pictures at Universal in the 1940s. I don't think I have paid much attention to him before as a movie 'star' (and we can use that word a bit lightly perhaps)...but while watching OUT OF THE BLUE, I found him to be a fine actor who gave a convincing comic performance. In fact, they all do a nice job here, and the film should be more well-known by today's audiences.
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A one joke stretch
bkoganbing18 September 2018
Out Of The Blue is a one note joke stretch of a comedy. Ann Dvorak got a lot of mileage out of stretching the fact she drinks like a fish and has an uncanny knack for passing out at the wrong time and place.

Which in this case is the terrace of George Brent and Carole Landis's apartment in Greenwich Village. Brent is cast against type as a henpecked fussbudget and at Landis's strong urging they dump the body on the terrace of another apartment, that of Bohemian artist Turhan Bey. That starts a round of complication as a pair of old maid neighbors Elizabeth Patterson and Julia Dean.spot her unconscious dead drunk body and think it's the real deal.

If you remember in Rear Window, the housebound James Stewart took up voyeurism was looking at all his neighbors apartments until he spotted something he thought odd. It's the same premise for Out Of The Blue only Patterson and Dean do it full time.

As for Bey's situation his main model Virginia Mayo would like to get a permanent commitment from him.

The film is amusing in spots, but Dvorak gets so downright annoying I might have just killed her for real. Hopefully there's AA in this woman's future.
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