Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|A Slight Case of Murder|
Actors: Edward G. Robinson, John Litel, Jane Bryan, Allen Jenkins, Willard Parker
Director: Lloyd Bacon
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Kids & Family, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
Prohibition's ban on booze is over, and that means bootlegger Remy Marco must make some changes. Don't go calling his beer-peddling enterprise a racket. It's now a business. Employees are no longer lugs or palookas, they'r... more »
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Hilarious send up of gangster genre
Douglas M | 08/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""A Slight Case of Murder" represented a welcome change of pace in 1938 for Edward G Robinson whereby he was able to send up his gangster image. Robinson plays Remy Marcos, a bootlegger during prohibition who goes straight with its repeal and into the legitimate brewery business. The only problem is that his beer tastes lousy and business is bad now that the suckers are not forced to buy his product through strong arm tactics.
The film was written by Damon Runyon, among others, and it reflects this with the slang and wealth of "small" characters which fill the film. The premise of the crook trying to go straight is a brilliant base for the hilarious comedy which follows, including Remy's wife Ruth Donnelly, flicking between highbrow talk and slang as she goes up market and superb support from Allen Jenkins, Ed Brophy and others as thugs who have to toe the line. Even one of the Dead End Kids appears as the child from the Orphanage Remy grew up in and chosen to spend a month in Remy's house. The scene at the orphanage with Margaret Hamilton, "Ain't changed a bit, as slick as a horse hair couch" says Remy to her, is as funny as anything in any film of the thirties. Also, the scene when the boys discuss the disposal of 4 dead bodies is side splitting. As the plot progresses, the jokes pile up, one after another, never letting up right to the superb finish.
The DVD print is excellent and there is the usual generous list of extras which Warner Brothers offer on their DVDs. The documentary commentary is more interesting than the hesitant and repetitive drone of the verbal commentary which can be played with the film. A pity too, because the commentator has some worthwhile observations to make and places the film squarely in its context of the 1938 Warner Brother's production line.
If the DVD is purchased as part of the Warner's Tough Guys Collection of which it is the forgotten gem, it is great value."
Inspiration for "Arsenic and Old Lace"?
Randy Keehn | Williston, ND United States | 12/17/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
""A Slight Case of Murder" led me to comparisons with "Arsenic and Old Lace". Maybe it's the bothersome corpses, the underworld characters, the clueless relatives, or the bumbling law enforcement characters but there is definitely a similarity. Most of all, the similarity is that the movies are quite humorous and very enjoyable. "Arsenic and Old Lace" scores higher in my book due to the quality of the acting, directing and writing but both are well worth the time. Most people are aquainted with "Old Lace" and, if not, it's fairly available . This was the first oppotunity I had to see "A Slight Case of Murder".
The best part of ASCOM is the preformance of Edward G. Robinson; one of the great actors of the 30's and 40's. He plays a good "heavy" yet fits right in with the humor. The only other name in the cast that I recognized was the wisenheimer sidekick character actor Allen Jenkins. The plot, written in part by Damon Runyon, has a Prohibition bootlegger go legitimate after booze was legalized again. When the bootlegger (Robinson) had a monopoly, it didn't matter what his beer tasted like. Once the professionals got back into the market, no one wanted his brand. So the money problems mount up, he's in debt, his daughter is going to get married and he has to pay off his loan or lose everything. The stage is set for a lot of interesting twists and turns.
If ASCOM has a short coming (and this wouldn't have mattered much back in 1937) it's that some of what we are asked to accept is a bit too much. I'm sure fans of "CSI" would have a fit with the outcome. However, the movie puts us in a mood to relax and enjoy so why bother with such details. "A Slight Case of Murder" is one of those films I like to call a retro-sleeper."
"You hadn't oughta do that."
WhenIrishEyes | Wilkes-Barre PA | 05/14/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Very enjoyable comedy, from beginning to end with an entertaining cast of characters. After Prohibition, Remy Marco is trying to hold on to his brewery, become dignified and go legitimate, discreetly get rid of dead bodies found in his summer home, all while trying to straighten out an incorrigible orphan. A fun movie for the entire family, and a must-see for every Edward G. Robinson fan.