Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Glass Key(1942).

The Glass Key(1942). Cast: Brian Donlevy, Veronica Lake and Alan Ladd.

Only out for himself.. Paul Madvig, plans to support candidate Ralph Henry for governor after falling in love with his daughter, Janet. Madvig's friend, Ed Beaumont, believes that he is making a big mistake and does not trust Janet, because she is in love with Beaumont. Madvig says that Henry, has given him the key to his house... Beaumont, warns him that it might be a glass key, that may break at any time.

Soon after, Madvig tells gangster Nick Varna, that he is cleaning up the city and that he, will no longer have protection from the police..

Henry's son, Taylor, owes Varna a lot of money, for his gambling debts and when Madvig finds out, Opal worries what he will do to her boyfriend.

Later, Beaumont finds Taylor's body and all evidence points to Madvig. When Varna hears that Beaumont and Madvig have gone their separate ways, he tries to recruit Beaumont. Beaumont turns him down, so Varna has him beaten to try to change his mind.

When Beaumont recovers, he learns that Varna has found a "witness" to Taylor Henry's murder. Madvig has Sloss brought to his office, but Sloss is gunned down before he gets there.

Beaumont finds Jeff and tries to get information from him. Just as Jeff starts to talk, Varna shows up and orders him to shut up. When Beaumont disarms Varna, Jeff strangles his boss. Beaumont, has the waiter call the police. Will Beaumont, be able to prove who killed Taylor?

In this classic film noir, you will be amazed at some of the physical stunts. Especially, when Ladd escapes out of a broken window has him falling off an awning and crashing through the ceiling where a family is having dinner.

Bonita Granville (February 2, 1923 – October 11, 1988). Made her film debut at the age of nine in, Westward Passage (1933).

Over the next couple of years she played uncredited supporting roles in films: as Little Women (1933) and Anne of Green Gables (1934) before playing the role of Mary in the film, The Children's Hour.

For her role, Granville was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

In 1938, she starred as the mischievous daughter in the multi-Academy Awards nominated comedy film, Merrily We Live and as girl detective Nancy Drew in the film Nancy Drew, Detective. The Nancy Drew film success led to Granville reprising the role in three sequels from 1938 to 1939, including Nancy Drew... Reporter (1939).

She was cast in supporting roles in the films: Now, Voyager (1942), Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble (1944) and Love Laughs at Andy Hardy (1946).

She is also remembered for her starring role in the World War II film, Hitler's Children (1943). Her career began to fade by the mid-1940's.

In 1947, Granville married Jack Wrather, who had produced some of her films. He formed the Wrather Corporation, and bought the rights to characters from both, The Lone Ranger and Lassie. Granville, worked as a producer for several film and television productions featuring these characters, including the 1954 TV series Lassie.

She performed in the film version of, The Lone Ranger(1956) and made her final screen performance in a cameo role in, The Legend of the Lone Ranger (1981).

In 1949, she performed with Rod Cameron in the comedy film, Strike It Rich.

She was honored at the Disneyland Hotel, which Jack Wrather owned until it was sold to the Walt Disney Company.

The Bonita Tower and Granville's Steak House were named in her honor.


  1. Dawn, you've got excellent taste in movies! I've been wanting to revisit THE GLASS KEY myself, both the movie and Dashiell Hammett's original novel, and your excellent review has reminded me why I like it so much. It must have been a happy day at Paramount when Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake teamed up; they were a great match both physically and chemistry-wise. Great clip from the movie, too!

  2. Dawn, I'm beginning to feel like you--I haven't seen this one! Will have to keep an eye out for it. Will be interesting to see Ladd in a noir.

  3. Dorian, Thank you, I agree.. Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake, make an awesome couple. I will keep an eye out for the film and let you know the next time it comes on TCM.

    Kim, I know.. but, at the same time, I have a long list of "new to me" films, that I'm looking foward to seeing. :) I will let you know next time it comes on TCM.

  4. I'm definitely going to be keeping a look out for this film. It looks like another great movie. I always tell myself to look at the TCM movie schedule, and I always forget!


  5. I bow to no one in my love for Alan Ladd or for "The Glass Key", but I will not rest until I get to see the 1935 version with George Raft, Edward Arnold and Claire Dodd. Why, oh why doesn't TCM give us a double bill?

  6. Mighty B, I think that you will also love this film.

    Caftan Woman, I do not think I have seen the 1935 version with George Raft, Edward Arnold and Claire Dodd. Another one to add to my list. :)


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