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

Thursday, June 19, 2014


Joseph Allen and Lynn Bari
THE NIGHT BEFORE THE DIVORCE (1942). Director: Robert Siodmak.

"There goes "Malicious." 

George Nordyke (Joseph Allen) is an insecure husband whose manhood is threatened by the fact that his wife, Lynn (Lynn Bari of Shock), is better at everything and even bagged the moose, Stinky, that hangs in their game room. When George almost literally runs into a more demure blonde named Lola May (Mary Beth Hughes of The Lady Confesses), he falls in love with her and he and Lynn decide to divorce, against the better judgment of their friend, Inspector "Camp" Campbell (Truman Bradley). Lynn winds up dating a radio musician named Victor Roselli (Nils Asther of Storm at Daybreak) and things get weird -- but still dull -- after one of the group gets murdered. Allen and Bari give it their all, but the script is horrible and there are few if any laughs. Kay Linaker tries to inject some life as Lynn's friend, Hedda, as does Thurston Hall as her hubby, and Mary Treen is as adept as ever as yet another maid, Olga. This doesn't even have the courage of its convictions.

Verdict: Not as much fun as clipping your toenails. *.

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