EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|CAPTAIN SCARFACE (director: Paul Guilfoyle; screenwriter: Charles Lang; cinematographer: Norbert Brodine; editor: Gene Fowler Jr.; music: Leon Klatzkin; cast: Leif Erickson (Sam Wilton), Virginia Grey (Elsa Yeager), Rudolph Anders (Dr. Yeager), John Mylong (Kroll), Paul Brinegar (Clegg), Howard Wendell (Fred Dilts), Isabel Randolph (Kate Dilts), Barton MacLain (Captain Scarface, Tregnor), Martin Garralaga (Manuel), Don Dillaway (Crofton), Peter Coe (Perro); Runtime: 72; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Hal Roach Jr.; Alpha Video Distributors; 1953)|
|"A good Red Scare thriller from
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
A good Red Scare thriller from the 1950s skillfully
directed by long-time television director Paul Guilfoyle ("Tess
of the Storm Country") and tautly
written by Charles Lang.
The freighter S.S. Banos is
torpedoed at sea, as an act of sabotage by communist agents. The only
survivor is the venal radioman Clegg (Paul
Brinegar). Captain Scarface (Barton MacLain), the new
captain of the replaced Banos, is a communist agent, who is the leader
of a group of commie agents who plan to blow up the Panama Canal with
the Atomic bomb they have stored in the freighter.
Scarface refuses to pay Clegg his promised $5,000 for not
reporting over the radio the ship's destruction, and is directed by
Scarface to go to the South American port city of San Brejo and
meet Kroll (John Mylong)
at the Los Rios Hotel for payment. When Kroll double-crosses Clegg, he
kills the commie agent. While fleeing with the cash, the hotel owner,
Manuel (Martin Garralaga),
Sam Wilton (Leif Erickson) is an American
working in S.A. on a plantation, who is on the run because he wounded
the owner of the plantation in self-defense and fears he won't
be believed by the authorities, as the owner was jealous of Sam
and suspected he was having an affair with his wife. Manuel allows his
friend Sam to take Kroll's passport and then substitutes his photo,
which he uses to board the Banos. There Sam befriends the brilliant
German atomic scientist Dr. Yeager (Rudolph Anders), who
with Kroll's help escaped from being held captive in Russia. Yeager
reunites with his attractive daughter Elsa (Virginia Grey)
and are bound for safety in America, but they soon learn of the danger
they are in when Scarface threatens the scientist to help destroy the
Panama Canal or else.
With the help of other American tourists aboard (Isabel Randolph, Howard Wendell
and Don Dillaway), the
good guys overcome the bad dudes.
The film received little recognition and attracted hardly
any box office when released, but built an audience through playing
from time-to-time on television over the years. It's a nice little
thriller, that is fun watching because it's so well presented and acted.
REVIEWED ON 12/10/2010 GRADE: B+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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