A wealthy man hires a detective to investigate his wife's past. The detective (Franchot Tone) discovers that the wife had been a dancer and left her home town with an actor. The latter is ...
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After witnessing an incident on a foreign ship off California coast, a U.S. Treasury agent aboard a Coast Guard vessel decides to further investigate the matter by following a crime trail leading to China, Egypt, Lebanon and Cuba.
In flashback from a 'Rebecca'-style beginning: Ellen Foster, visiting her aunt on the California coast, meets neighbor Jeff Cohalan and his ultramodern clifftop house. Ellen is strongly ... See full summary »
Drifting floozy Billie Nash gets a bar job where she seduces the owner's husband by convincing him to defraud his drunkard wife in order to elope together to Mexico but a sleazy neighbor with designs on Billie jeopardizes her plans.
A young convict,Johnny Coulter, serving as a trustee and with only a year remaining on his sentence, is forced to participate in a prison break by one of the hardened criminals. They ... See full summary »
A wealthy man hires a detective to investigate his wife's past. The detective (Franchot Tone) discovers that the wife had been a dancer and left her home town with an actor. The latter is killed before he can talk, but, with the help of a showgirl, the detective learns that the wife had used stolen papers from a girl friend to enter college after she had stolen $40,000 from the night club where she worked. The detective eventually learns that the husband had killed his wife when he discovered her past in order to avoid a scandal, and had hired the detective to try and frame him for the killing.Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Bailey's office window looks out at the neon roof sign of The Broadway Hollywood department store at Hollywood & Vine. From his apartment window, the roof sign of the Knickerbocker Hotel on Ivar can be seen. See more »
Were you ever mixed up in a murder before? I'll let you in on something. To the bunco squad or the vice squad that license of yours may mean something. To the homicide bureau, it's just a scrap of paper.
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From the school of Raymond Chandler, an obscure film noir that packs a punch
Don't be put off by the frisky title: I Love Trouble isn't one of those dismal crime-cum-comedy hybrids so inexplicably popular in the '40s (true, a bantering element tries to creep in from time to time but it's held mercifully at bay; one routine, however, starring a hash-slinger named Miss Phipps, deserves to be bronzed).
It's a pretty hard-boiled private-eye yarn, very much in the Raymond Chandler tradition - maybe a bit too much. More specifically, I Love Trouble follows the footsteps tramped out by Murder, My Sweet and The Lady in the Lake, and follows them doggedly. And its subsidiary roles are filled with actors who make up a Who's Who of film noir: Janice Carter, Adele Jergens, John Ireland, Raymond Burr (barely visible, alas), Tom Powers, Eduardo Ciannelli, Steven Geray, Sid Tomack. Parts even smaller (it's a big cast) are filled to the brim with apt characterization.
The principal role of the gumshoe, however, goes to Franchot Tone, who plays it very much in the Powell-and-Mongomery-as-Marlowe style. He's hired by a tough businessman (Powers) to keep tabs on his elusive wife (Lynn Merrick). Tone traces the obligatory route from low dives to high places in his quest, from back alleys in Portland and fish dumps near the oil derricks of Santa Monica (Chandler's corrupt `Bay City') to gated mansions where swimming pools sparkle amid manicured lawns. All Tone knows is that, back in '46 (or was it '41?), Merrick came down from Oregon, where he learns that she was a bubble dancer in a mobbed-up nightclub, who absconded to Southern California with a cheesy comic (Tomack).
Or did she? When another woman claiming to be Merrick's sister (Janet Blair) fails to recognize her picture, Tone finds himself with a lot of pieces none of which seem to fit together. And the heavies from up north are joined by powerful folks in Los Angeles who firmly discourage him from looking any further (when he's not being eyed fetchingly by expensive wives and mistresses, he's conked on the head or drugged up at every turn). Getting warmer, he tries to coax more information from Tomack, only to find the funny fishmonger dead and himself a suspect. But when Merrick's body washes up under a pier, her death opens more questions than it answers....
The director, S. Sylvan Simon, shows considerable promise which was not to be redeemed (he died, at age 41, three years after making this movie). But most of the credit, however derivative, should probably accrue to its writer, and author of the novel on which it's based, Roy Huggins; he also penned Too Late For Tears, Woman in Hiding and Pushover, and, moving to television, would create 77 Sunset Strip, The Fugitive, and The Rockford Files. It goes to show how cracking the books at the school of Raymond Chandler can pay off in the future. So what if I Love Trouble is knockoff Chandler, a cocktail shaken up from two films made from his novels? Chandler neat is a potent shot - even watered down it holds its deep, smoky flavor.
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