Friday, April 06, 2007

Tonight's Movie: Dangerous Blondes (1943)

DANGEROUS BLONDES (1943) is a comedic murder mystery which follows the popular THIN MAN formula, featuring a husband-and-wife detective team. Allyn Joslyn and Evelyn Keyes star as Barry and Jane Craig, who team up to solve a string of murders. Barry is a mystery writer, while Jane is a former actress. Joslyn and Keyes may not be Powell and Loy, but they had nice chemistry and this film is great fun on its own merits.

This "B" movie has a clever script, played with zest by the leads. It's wonderful to see the always-funny Joslyn playing the lead for a change, when he was so often cast in supporting roles. Joslyn, incidentally, was the original Mortimer Brewster in ARSENIC AND OLD LACE on Broadway, a role which went to Cary Grant in the film version. Joslyn's friendly nemesis in DANGEROUS BLONDES, Inspector Clinton, is played by Frank Craven, who created the role of the Stage Manager in the original Broadway production of OUR TOWN. This might have been a "B" movie, but it had "A" talent.

Joslyn and Keyes make a delightful team, and I found myself wishing they had made a series of these pictures as I would have liked to see more of the Craigs.

The supporting cast includes Anita Louise, John Hubbard, Edmund Lowe, and Frank Sully. It was directed by Leigh Jason. The movie was filmed in black and white and runs 81 minutes.

DANGEROUS BLONDES has not been released on VHS or DVD. It was recently shown on Turner Classic Movies for the very first time.

September 2010 Update: Here's a look at a semi-sequel Joslyn and Keyes made the following year, STRANGE AFFAIR (1944).


Blogger Irene said...

I really appreciate that you put the direct link to voting in your comments :) I just brought the count to 268 votes! Usually when I go to vote on one of these movies there's only 15 or so votes.

I found Four Daughters online at a library and am waiting for it to come in.

7:36 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

You had a good idea when you mentioned voting for movies a time or two, and I thought maybe I could make it easier for more people to vote. Have no idea how much good the voting actually does, but it sure can't hurt to take a couple seconds and do it, right? :)

Hope you enjoy FOUR DAUGHTERS -- let me know what you think.

Happy Easter!

9:02 AM  
Blogger Dale said...

I'm not sure of the validity of the host of Turner Classic Movies when he says the movie was on for the first time. I watched this week too. Tuesday night they had a good movie called "Angels have Wings."(or something like that) It was good but I have seen it before on this station. It's about the only station I like to watch, I'm kinda out of touch with popular shows like CSI, Desparate Housewives, The Sopranos. Wednesday night there were too excellent movies, Rafter Romance. This one was new and my mother said she never heard of it or the leading man, Norman Foster. Ginger Rogers played the lead and was her normal fast-talking bubbly actress. She played this role as Mary before she was the leading dancer with Fred Astaire. It had a landlord like you can't find today: giving Ginger a cedar chest, bureau, and bed in her apartment; giving her homemade chicken noodle soup and just plain watching out for her. She had to move into the attic apartment and it had the steepest stairs ascending up so cool. Norman and her were young people struggling in New York City, like when he brought coffee and evaporated milk. So different than a world like today. Norman was full of lines he used to get to know Ginger. After that movie was a good one much different, two people coming from well-to-do families. This one starred Ann Harding and William Powell. I love the way the writers of those times made the plots fun to follow, well written, and the ending was unpredictable but the ending I wanted. I have set up a blog called "Early Movie Sensations" which is a study I quickly did hoping to get a Teaching Assistantship for my masters. Unfortunately I found out today I didn't get it! Dale

2:20 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi Dale,

Thanks for your thoughts.

Apparently DANGEROUS BLONDES was on TV decades ago, but TCM fairly recently began showing a bunch of Columbia movies, and this was one of them.

The title you were unsure of was ONLY ANGELS HAVE WINGS -- some of my family happened to watch that the other day.

I'm looking forward to seeing the Rogers (RAFTER ROMANCE) and Powell (DOUBLE HARNESS) movies myself. They both sound great. I enjoyed your descriptions -- it certainly was a different era. Besides being an actor, Norman Foster was a director and was the brother-in-law of actress Loretta Young. I don't believe I've seen him act before.

TCM is the greatest, isn't it?

I'm sorry to hear you didn't get the job you were hoping for -- best wishes for the future.


2:42 PM  

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