Saturday, September 19, 2020

Tonight's Movie: The McGuerins From Brooklyn (1942) - A ClassicFlix DVD Review

THE MCGUERINS FROM BROOKLYN (1942) is the second of three films in The Complete Hal Roach Streamliners Collection, Volume 3: The Taxi Comedies.

It was preceded by BROOKLYN ORCHID (1942), reviewed here earlier this summer, and was followed by TAXI, MISTER (1943).

Tim McGuerin (William Bendix) and Eddie Corbett (Joe Sawyer) are working-class guys who have become financially successful due to ownership of a busy Brooklyn taxi company.

Tim is married to beautiful Sadie (Grace Bradley), a former stripper.  Eddie has a girlfriend, Marcia (Arline Judge), but is also attracted to the taxi company's beautiful secretary, Lucy (Marjorie Woodworth).

When Tim tries to help Eddie juggle the women in his life, Sadie incorrectly thinks her husband is having an affair with Lucy and tries to make him jealous with Samson (Max Baer), her fitness instructor.

Everyone ends up at a health spa, where things only get crazier...

I had a good time watching this one, and in fact I think it improved on the previous film.  It's by no means a classic comedy, but it does exactly what it sets out to do, provide some chuckles and a nice diversion in a short running time, in this case 45 minutes.

A couple of sequences are particularly funny; I enjoyed the check-in sequence at the resort, where a geyser of spring water shoots up in the lobby, and the "fight" sequence with Tim and Samson at the end is quite good, particularly giving Grace Bradley the chance to show her comedy skills.

Bradley's performance as Sadie has been the highlight of the two movies for me.  She's quite good sketching out her rags-to-riches character with limited screen time, and her reactions are delightful; I especially loved her screaming "Murder!" near the end of the movie.

Bradley had married William "Hopalong Cassidy" Boyd in 1937 and the "Taxi" films were her movie swansong.  After TAXI, MISTER she retired to support her husband in his long, busy career as Hoppy.

Woodworth is cute as Lucy.  Look for a very young Alan Hale Jr. in one of his earliest movie roles, working in the resort gym.  Also in the cast are Marion Martin, Rex Evans, J. Farrell MacDonald and Frank Faylen, 

THE MCGUERINS FROM BROOKLYN was directed by Kurt Neumann and filmed in black and white by Robert Pittack

The print and sound quality are very good.  The disc also includes five trailers for additional ClassicFlix releases.

I'll be reviewing the last movie in the set, TAXI, MISTER, at a future date, along with additional films from the first two Streamliners collections.

Thanks to ClassicFlix for providing a review copy of this DVD.


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