A veteran World War I fighter pilot returns home a war hero and immediately regains his former job as a railroad company detective. His first case: recover a stolen satchel filled with ...
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A veteran World War I fighter pilot returns home a war hero and immediately regains his former job as a railroad company detective. His first case: recover a stolen satchel filled with $25,000 of company payroll, locate a missing employee, and capture a gang of railroad thieves.Written by
A railroad detective turned WWI Ace returns to his job. His assignment today is to find out who stole the railroad's $25,000 payroll and kidnapped the company's paymaster at a small station near the swamps of Florida. Is it the station master? His pretty daughter? The mysteriously rich man who owns his own airplane? Whoever it is, the movie will feature fights, flights, daring rescues in mid-air and a comic policeman.
It would be a well written and performed programmer from a major Hollywood studio, and largely forgotten today. However, it isn't from one of the majors, it's from Norman Studios in Florida, and it features an all-Black cast. Certainly it wasn't the first feature-length race film; writer-producer-director Richard Norman had been producing them at his own studio at least since 1919. What's extraordinary about it, is that Norman was making films that stand up purely as entertainment. There's no message about the tiny world the Black people were crammed into, like Oscar Michaeux was fond of: just good, clean entertainment.
Or was there a message? We see Black railroad executives, and Black women wanting to fly planes, and Black flying aces.... wasn't this movie saying, in effect, that its audience was capable of all of these things?
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