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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Big Brown Eyes (1936)

A manicurist (Joan Bennett) is in love with a police detective (Cary Grant). When she mistakenly thinks he's been cheating on her, she quits her job and goes to work for a newspaper. It's there that she gets a hot tip on a baby killer and decides to play detective on her own. Although it has two top stars and is directed by the renowned Raoul Walsh, this is definitely a lesser film in their filmographies. It's a throwaway really but on its own terms, it's a nicely polished programmer that goes down easily and is quickly forgettable. A middling detective story with screwball comedy trimmings ..... or perhaps it's the other way around. Grant wasn't quite the Cary Grant yet and Bennett was still a blonde standing in for Carole Lombard. In a few more years, both would have bloomed into the stature that personified their star status. Co-starring Walter Pidgeon (not yet a leading man) as a crooked insurance detective, Lloyd Nolan as the baby killer thug, Isabel Jewell, Douglas Fowley and Henry Brandon.

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