Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, December 29, 2016


William Bishop, Myrna Loy, William Powell
SONG OF THE THIN MAN (1947). Director: Edward Buzzell.

The gambling ship, S. S. Fortune, is the sight of the murder of band leader Tommy Drake (Phillip Reed). Suspects include songstress Fran (Gloria Grahame); her ex-boyfriend Buddy (Don Taylor of The Girls of Pleasure Island); gangster Al Amboy (William Bishop); Mr. and Mrs. Talbin (Leon Ames; Patricia Morison); and Phil Brant (Bruce Cowling), whom the police are after for the crime. His fiancee, Janet (Jayne Meadows of Enchantment), comes to Nick Charles (William Powell) for help, and he digs into the case with his usual jaunty style. Nora (Myrna Loy) tags along to no great purpose, while their cute little boy Nick Jr. (Dean Stockwell of The Werewolf of Washington) is left in the charge of Asta and the housekeeper, Bertha (Connie Gilchrist). Song of the Thin Man is not one of the better entries in the series -- in fact it was the last --  although it does have a lively and quite amusing finale. Gloria Grahame is completely wasted in her very small role as Fran, as is Marie Windsor, playing the gangster's wife in just one sequence. This has one of the dumbest murderers ever. The catchy song "You're not so easy to forget" is pleasantly warbled by whoever is dubbing Grahame. Ralph Morgan is Janet's grumpy father, and Morris Ankrum is the police inspector.

Verdict: Talky and dull with few bright spots. **.


angelman66 said...

Gosh. They made a LOT of movies together. Just saw The Great Ziegfeld again from 1936 and of course SHE is in it too!! LOL And also watched Myrna as the aunt in the Doris Day thriller Midnight Lace. You can tell it's Myrna Loy Month on TCM!
- Chris

William said...

I first met Loy at the D.W. Griffith awards in Lincoln Center, quite a few years ago. She was there along with Jimmy Cagney, in a wheelchair, Warren Beatty with at least one woman, and Richard Gere who kept his head down the whole time and dragged along some gal who was always a few paces behind him. I asked some man if these seats were taken before I realized it was Martin Scorcese (hey were taken).

angelman66 said...

OMG - so cool!! Wow! You remind me that not too long ago, many of these greats were still with us. My best friend and I used to count how many of the stars name-checked by Madonna in the song "Vogue" were still alive. After Lauren passed away recently, the number is zero...Same when I watch the That's Entertainment films....All the stars who introduced segments have all passed away (Debbie Reynolds most recently), except for Liza Minnelli.

Thanks for sharing that amazing anecdote, Bill--really cool indeed.

William said...

Thanks Chris! Remind me to tell you my Joan Bennett anecdote some time.

Amazing that everyone mentioned in Madonna's song is gone. And she's no spring chicken herself, LOL!