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

Thursday, April 2, 2015


Joan Woodbury and Chester Morris
CONFESSIONS OF BOSTON BLACKIE (1941). Director: Edward Dmytryk.

"You have a little Gestapo in you."

Ex-thief Boston Blackie (Chester Morris) is again accused of murder when a shot rings out at an art auction, a man falls dead, and a young lady, Diane (Harriet Hilliard of Gals Incorporated), winds up in the hospital. As Blackie does his best to elude Inspector Farraday (Richard Lane), he discovers another problem in the form of ferocious Mona (the big-faced Joan Woodbury of The Time Travelers), who insists she's married to Boston and wants a big pay-off. Then there's a missing corpse, and a tense finale when Boston and others are trapped in an underground vault. The Boston Blackie series took a major leap forward with this second entry, with is superior to the first [Meet Boston Blackie] on nearly every level, with an excellent cast giving their all, and quite a few funny lines. In a brief bit Ralph Dunn makes an impression as Police Officer McCarthy, and there's another bit by a feisty old nurse who is, alas, uncredited; Lloyd Corrigan is also notable as the art lover Manleder. Morris hits just the right note as Boston -- as does George E. Stone as "the runt" -- and Woodbury looks as tall and tough as an Amazon.

Verdict: This one is fun. ***.

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