DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews
 
UNDERCOVER MAISIE (director: Harry Beaumont; screenwriters: story and screenplay by Thelma Robinson/characters created by Wilson Collison; cinematographer: Charles Salerno; editor: Ben Lewis; music: David Snell; cast: Ann Sothern (Maisie Ravier), Barry Nelson (Lt. Scott),  Charles Brown (Capt. Mead), Leon Ames (Amor/Willis Farnes), Gloria Holden (Jane Canford), Mark Daniels (Chip Dolan), Clinton Sundberg (Guy Canford), Dick Simmons (Gil Rogers), Nella Walker (Mrs. Andrew Lorrison), Gene Roberts (Viola Trengham), Rudy Wissler (Johnny); Runtime: 90; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: George Haight; MGM/Warner Home Video; 1947)

"A breezy comedy about the bunco squad in Los Angeles."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

MGM's long-running ten film "Maisie" series ends with this tolerable one. It's a breezy comedy about the bunco squad in Los Angeles and its newest recruit Maisie (Ann Sothern). Harry Beaumont ("Our Dancing Daughters"/"The Broadway Melody") directs in a workmanlike manner. It's based on the story and screenplay by Thelma Robinson.

While the hard-pressed showgirl Maisie Ravier (Ann Sothern) is trying to leave Los Angeles by train to take a job as a bubble bath demonstrator in NYC, she's hustled by a confidence artist (Nella Walker) who offers her a car ride and then leaves her stranded at a diner without money or clothes. When reporting the crime to straight-laced Lt. Paul Scott (Barry Nelson) of LAPD's Bunco Squad, he becomes so impressed with her looks and ability to think like a cop that he recruits her to become a police officer. After training at the Police Academy, she joins his bunco squad.

Maisie helps a woman (
Gene Roberts) whose mom was swindled by a phony fortune teller named Amor (Leon Ames). The real name of Amor is Willis Farnes, who runs a real estate scam. Maisie poses as a client of the fortune teller, asking for advice on how to invest her fortune in real estate. Afterwards Gilfred I. Rogers (Dick Simmons), one of Farnes's accomplices, poses as a real estate agent and offers Maisie an apartment for a down payment of $20,000. When Farnes discovers Maisie's an undercover cop, he prepares to leave town after one last con job. When he and his dangerous partners Jane and Guy Canford (Gloria Holden & Clinton Sundberg) catch Maisie snooping around his place, they take her captive to an apartment they use as a hideout. Somehow Maisie gets word out of her capture to the police. But Scott arrives too late to save her, as the gang takes her to another location where the couple plan to kill her.

REVIEWED ON 5/8/2018       GRADE: B-

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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