Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Jack Armstrong The All-American Boy|
Actors: John Hart, Rosemary La Planche, Claire James, Joe Brown Jr., Pierre Watkin
Director: Wallace Fox
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama
A brilliant scientist working on atom-powered motors is kidnapped and taken to a mysterious island where the master villain, in usual cliffhanger form, hopes to conquer the world and gives our hero a hell of a time! Jac... more »
Good Columbia serial, nice print, villain's worth the price!
Scott MacGillivray | Massachusetts, USA | 08/13/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"JACK ARMSTRONG is the 1947 movie version of the popular radio series. The stalwart of Hudson High looks somewhat older (in the person of John Hart, who went on to play The Lone Ranger), and you won't see much of Hudson at all -- most of this is an outdoor adventure, almost a jungle serial with its native tribes and superstitions, with an occasional hint of space-age technology. Good direction and stuntwork throughout, with some imaginative twists on stock perils (like a fistfight aboard a moving dump truck!). On the minus side, Jack's pal Billy is played in dumb-oaf fashion by Joe Brown, Jr., and his antics may become annoying. (He's always snacking on something; when we saw him with gun in hand, we thought he'd eat it.) Pierre Watkin, almost always cast in movies as distinguished bankers, attorneys, and men of distinction, is surprisingly good in the strenuous role of Jack's two-fisted uncle. Fans of Columbia serials will recognize Jack Ingram, Wheeler Oakman, John Merton, Stanley Blystone, Harold Brauer, and Don C. Harvey among the heavies.
But the unsung star of JACK ARMSTRONG is Charles Middleton, famous among serial fans as "Emperor Ming" in the Flash Gordon serials. Middleton was a last-minute addition to the cast (relieving Wheeler Oakman of some of the action), and he does not receive any billing. Middleton is terrific as the trading-post proprietor who will stop at nothing to become master of the universe. The way he gets his reward in the last chapter is one of the simplest and cleverest devices we've ever seen. Middleton's grave face and ominous voice lend some distinction to a standard adventure story.
VCI deserves a bow for releasing these seldom-seen cliffhangers on DVD. The quality of the merchandise is excellent.
My grandfather's review
Christina | Birmingham, Alabama | 11/13/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I spoke with my grandfather who loved this radio series as a child. I thought he might be the best capable to give this review, I have heard him talk about it so many times. I called him and asked him to tell me about it again... he said: "I couldn't have been more than 7 or 8 years old... My friend Robert and I used to run home from working (no child labor laws then.. ha!) or school lessons to listen to the adventures of Jack... Robert's parents were the only one with a radio to pick up the program. We used to love these programs. I know he wasn't the Lone Ranger, or anything.. everyone was into cowboys then...but Jack was different...and he was pretty good. You know, (laughing) Jack used to get into something every week. The problem is that every time Jack would be captured... or into the mix.. the radio would go out.. Robert would run to fix the antenna... but then they would have the advertisements for next week.. *sigh*. Cliffhangers. But we loved it then.. I think that made it even better. It would probably be a little silly now.. but, you know, I would really like to know what happened to old Jack""