Monday, September 17, 2012

"Saboteur" with Bob Cummings and Priscilla Lane (1942)

When I was about 4 years old I used to watch a show called “The Bob Cummings Show”, in which he played a carefree bachelor, always juggling one woman against the next. Although I was probably too young to understand the show, I did notice the actor. The next time I saw him was on good old WOR-TV in New York when I was about 7 years old. He was playing the part of a man named Barry Kane, who works in an aircraft factory during World War Two.

Basically the plot centers about a mysterious man who bumps into Barry Kane just before the factory catches fire, obviously due to arson. As the two bump into one another, the other man drops a hundred dollar bill, along with some envelopes bearing his name and address, as well as the address of the envelopes destination. Moments after he returns the money, and the envelopes, to the stranger, the fire breaks out. Barry’s friend is killed fighting the fire with an extinguisher which has obviously been filled with gasoline. Subsequently, Barry Kane is accused of being a saboteur, and the chase is on as he flees the authorities, while trying to unlock the key to the trap in which he has found himself ensnared.

This is the first Alfred Hitchcock movie I ever remember seeing. And, as I was later to learn by watching his other films, it contains all of the elements crucial to a Hitchcock film. First rate performances by Bob Cummings and Priscilla Lane make this one a winner.

Happy Shana Tova - 5773!

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