GUN BELT 1953

imageGUN BELT is action packed, with a good cast headed by GEORGE MONTGOMERY and JOHN DEHNER as brothers,Billy and Matt Ringo.One good,one bad. No bets on who the good brother is.

TAB HUNTER is Chip Ringo,Matt’s son who wants to believe in his father who has just escaped from prison.

.DOUGLAS KENNEDY and JACK ELAM are Matt’s henchmen and JAMES MILLICAN is Wyatt Earp. WILLIAM BISHOP is Ike Clinton (you might well ask and no, I didn’t mean Clanton!)

Montgomery as Billy sums up his outlaw brother, “He’ll sleep with his boots on and his horse saddled the rest of his life.”

While Matt says what he thinks of Billy, “A reformed gun is worse than a reformed drunk.”

TWO SMART PEOPLE (MGM 1947)

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Lucille Ball and John Hodiak star as con artists who meet up and spar with each other while falling in love.
Lloyd Nolan is the detective after Hodiak for stolen treasury bonds.
The film charts five days the threesome spend crossing the country by train to New York where Hodiak is facing jail time.
Elisha Cook is after the bonds too.

Sounds like a breeze with three good leads and direction by Jules Dassin,but the pace is too slow.

Lucille Ball ,John Hodiak

Lucille Ball ,John Hodiak

ONE DANGEROUS NIGHT (1943)

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Warren William as Michael Lanyard aka The Lone Wolf, with some nice female support from Margerite Chapman,Mona Barrie,Tala Birell,Ann Savage.
I could have done without Eric Blore as Lanyard’s assistant. Funny,he isn’t.

“THE SHADOW:THE MISSING LADY (1946)

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Kane Richmond in his third outing as Lamont Cranston/The Shadow. He’s chasing a jade statue called The Missing Lady whose owner has been murdered.There are plenty of suspects. Unfortunately there’s a mixture of comedy and drama that just doesn’t work. The Shadow gets slapped around by both the police and gangsters, and director Phil Carlson (who did 99 RIVER STREET) conjures up several scenes of darkness and violence.
Then there is a group of supporting players who run around like they are in another film altogether – I felt sorry for James Flavin and Barbara Read having to act like idiots. At least Claire Carleton wasn’t part of that group and she played well as one of the suspects.

Barbara Read who made her name as Deanna Durbin’s sister in THREE SMART GIRLS,had been in two previous Shadow films. her career came to an end in 1948 and she committed suicide aged 45.

MADAME SPY (1942)

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Constance BENNETT stars in this Universal Second World War spy drama. She marries Don Porter who plays a war correspondent. She has shady friends,John Litel and Nana Bryant and her new husband becomes suspicious of her allegiance – is she a spy?
Edward Brophy is likeable as a taxi driver friend of Porter.The plot moves along at a pace (well. I guess you have to when the running time is only 60 minutes!)
I like Constance Bennett and it is such a shame ,at this stage in her career,she’s in a B programmer with a costar with whom she has no chemistry.

(You gotta love the poster designer who portrays Constance as a gun wielding floozie!)

8 responses »

  1. Love that poster artwork;especially MADAME SPY.
    This one I have to track down,I generally really like
    Roy William Neiils films.Thanks Vienna,for making me aware
    of it.Rather sad Constance Bennett was reduced to appearing
    in these sort of programmers at that time,especially considering
    her earlier work.I really want to see the Western she made at the
    same time WILD BILL HICKOK RIDES,but wonder if Bruce Cabot
    was a good choice for the title role.
    At least it was made for a major studio (Warner Brothers)
    Funnily enough I saw another wartime programmer BOMBERS MOON
    (1943) over the weekend. This one stars George Montgomery and
    Annabella.Highly improbable but fast moving and diverting.
    Hard to believe it took four directors to make this one!
    (Harold Schuster,Edward Ludwig,John Braham and Robert Florey)

  2. Can’t imagîne the sophisticated Constance in the Hickok film.
    Four directors on the one film. Wonder what the problem was.

  3. Edward Brophy was a great character actor. Brophy is really good in Larceny Inc. with EG Robinson and Broderick Crawford. A must see gangster spoof, funny stuff.

  4. Always liked Hodiak, especially in Dinner For A Soldier and A Bell For Adano. Must catch up on the one you mentioned. Is it on DVD?

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