A newspaper man, his ignored fiancée, and his former employee, a down on his luck reporter, hatch an elaborate scheme to turn a false news story into the truth in order to prevent a high-society woman from suing for libel.
Nick and Nora Charles are asked by Phil Brant and Janet Thayar, who have just eloped, to help them after band leader Tommy Drake is killed at a society dance which Nick and Nora also attended. The police are looking to arrest Brant for the murder and while he claims he's innocent, Nick isn't too keen on having him in the house and turns him over to the police. As they look into the case, Nick and Nora learn that Drake wasn't very well liked and there are actually several people who benefited from his death. Drake owed money to loan shark Al Amboy, and Janet's father disliked Brant and may have set him up. Drake's girlfriend may have been having a fling with clarinetist Buddy Hollis, and he and Drake had a fist fight on stage during the festivities. Nick arranges for another party on the same boat where Nora notices something quite peculiar about one of the guest's jewelry.Written by
Watch an old mediocre Hollywood movie, not a new lousy one
It may be mediocre, small-time fare, but it's also an excellent example of studio filmmaking from the 40s. In the last of the Thin Man movies, Nick (William Powell) and Nora (Myrna Loy) solve a murder (again), this time concerning a jazz bandleader (I think; the plot was kind of confusing). The dialogue isn't as sharp as in the other movies, and Dean Stockwell as Nick Jr. is cloying (although he was far worse in Anchors Aweigh). Keenan Wynn is fun as a jazz "insider" who "jams"; the outdated language in this movie is unbelievable. This is also wholesale propaganda: all the jazz players in the movie are either drunk or unpleasant, or both, thereby reinforcing the wholesome American family. As Janet, Jayne Meadows looks EXACTLY like Donna on Twin Peaks. Intentional or not? Compelling enough reason to watch this movie (the other reason is a bizarre sequence in which William Powell remembers his son growing up while his memories are projected onto the boy's butt).
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