EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|SECRET SIX, THE (director: George W. Hill; screenwriter: Frances Marion; cinematographer: Harold Wenstrom; editor: Blanche Sewell; cast: Wallace Beery (Louis Scorpio), Lewis Stone (Richard Newton), John Mack Brown (Hank Rogers), Jean Harlow (Anne Courtland), Marjorie Rambeau (Peaches), Paul Hurst (Nick Mizoski), Clark Gable (Carl Luckner), Ralph Ralph Bellamy (Johnny Franks), John Miljan (Smiling Joe Colimo), DeWitt Jennings (Chief Donlin), Murray Kinnell (Dummy Metz), Fletcher Norton (Jimmy Delano), Theodore Von Eltz (DA), Frank McGlynn (Judge), Louis Natheaux (Eddie); Runtime: 83; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: George W. Hill; MGM; 1931)|
star Clark Gable impressed the MGM studio bosses so
much in this
gangster pic, they gave him a long-term contract."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Rising star Clark Gable impressed the MGM studio bosses so much in this gangster pic, they gave him a long-term contract. Director George W. Hill ("Min and Bill"/"The Big House") keeps it blazing away with action. It's written by Frances Marion.
It's set during the Prohibition era, in the small town of Centro. Bootlegger/cafe owner Johnny Franks (Ralph Bellamy) recruits crude slaughterhouse worker Louis Scorpio (Wallace Beery) to join his gang, which is masterminded by the aristocratic alcoholic crooked criminal defense lawyer Richard Newton (Lewis Stone). Soon the ruthless Scorpio knocks off his rival Franks and runs the gang for the dissolute Newton. The gang violently takes over speakeasies run by Smiling Joe Colimo (John Miljan), and Scorpio becomes a wealthy and powerful figure in town. The gang pays off bribes to get its stooge Nick Mizoski (Paul Hurst) elected mayor.
reporters Hank Rogers (Johnny Mack Brown) and Carl
Gable) investigate with help from "The Secret Six," a
businessmen eager to fight crime by any means at their
turn for the gang when
they rub-out Hank, he's the mug that
Scorpio's moll, with a golden heart, Anne
Courtland (Jean Harlow), fell for and tried to help.
against Scorpio at his murder trial, but Newton bribed
the jury and
they render an astonishing innocent verdict. With that
the Secret Six
have retrieved evidence of corruption and income tax
the gang, and under Chief Donlin they raid their
headquarters and either kill or arrest the entire
This marked Jean Harlow's first of six times she teamed with Clark Gable (Red Dust (1932), Hold Your Man (1933), China Seas (1935), Wife Vs. Secretary (1936) and Saratoga (1937)).
REVIEWED ON 5/5/2011 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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