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

Thursday, November 19, 2009

BEHIND THE MASK


BEHIND THE MASK (1932). Director: John Francis Dillon.

Jack Quinn (Jack Holt) is a secret service agent who goes undercover as a crook, even taking part in a jail break, to expose the identity of a sinister figure, "Mr. X," who heads a criminal organization. If only this were half as much fun as it sounds. Quinn is one of the stupidest Fedeal agents ever put on film. Boris Karloff enlivens things just a bit as one of X's henchmen, and Edward Van Sloan is a cackling doctor also in the employ of X [whose identity comes as absolutely no surprise to anyone]. Constance Cummings isn't bad as the frightened daughter of a doctor (Claude King) who is victimized by the evil mastermind. Bertha Mann is the evil Nurse Edwards, who is always reporting to X.

Verdict: Any X movie would be better than this! *.

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