Monday, February 20, 2012

Tonight's Movie: Power Dive (1941)

POWER DIVE is a fast-paced 68-minute film which should be of particular interest to fans of aviation movies and admirers of the great cinematographer John Alton, who shot the film.

Brad Farrell (Richard Arlen) and Johnny Coles (Louis Jean Heydt) are test pilots. Brad's kid brother Doug (Don Castle) wants to fly too, but Brad wants Doug to stick to engineering, where he won't be at risk of cracking up in an airplane.

Both brothers fall for Carol Blake (Jean Parker) whose blind father (Thomas W. Ross) has designed a new kind of airplane Brad plans to test for the Army.

The movie is nothing particularly special, but I found it pleasant company, especially as I enjoy movies with an aviation setting. The cast is competent -- although the antics of Cliff Edwards as a mechanic become a bit tiresome -- and the story speeds along at a brisk pace. I'd much rather watch an atmospheric little "B" movie like this than most current TV shows!

I also enjoy films which utilize location shooting in the L.A. area; according to IMDb, the airport seen in the film is Los Angeles Metropolitan Airport in Van Nuys.

I was taken with Helen Mack, who plays Heydt's wife; she looks a bit like Frances Dee. Billy Lee, Roger Pryor, and Tom Dugan are also in the cast. The movie was directed by James P. Hogan.

POWER DIVE was the first film from Pine-Thomas Productions, then called Picture Corporation of America. There's more information about Pine-Thomas Productions in my recent post on NO HANDS ON THE CLOCK (1941), which incidentally also starred Jean Parker.

POWER DIVE is available on DVD-R from Sinister Cinema.


Blogger panavia999 said...

That is one of the best movies posters *ever*!

3:43 PM  

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