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

Thursday, August 10, 2017

ANYTHING FOR A THRILL

Brothers: Kane Richmond and Frankie Darro
ANYTHING FOR A THRILL (1937). Director: Leslie Goodwins.

"Sometimes I think you're next to an idiot."

Newsreel photographer Cliff Mallory (Kane Richmond) is told by his boss, Collins (Edward Hearn), to get some footage of pretty heiress Betty Kelley (Ann Evers) or else. Apparently Miss Kelley has an aversion to having her picture taken by anyone, including Cliff and his younger brother, Dan (Frankie Darro). Dan has a sort of girlfriend named Jean (June Johnson), and Betty is engaged to a suave lowlife named Albert (Johnstone White), who is only hoping to get money out of her. The crap hits the fan when the Mallory brothers do manage to  get Betty on film, and she retaliates ... Anything for a Thrill is one of a number of cheap movies [such as Tough To Handle] starring Richmond and Darro as brothers, or student and mentor, and this one is about average. The screenplay is not terrible, just minor-league, with characters that are not much developed beyond stereotypes. Darro is as good as usual, while Richmond, a handsome serial star [Haunted Harbor] with a pleasing presence, is more than competent but not exactly a gifted comedian. Ann Evers makes an impression as the heiress, but squeaky-voiced June Johnson is as grating as she is "cute;" neither actress had that many credits. Edward Hearn and Darro also appeared together in The Vanishing Legion serial.

Verdict: Darro is generally superior to his material. **.

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