Greetings, and welcome to VIEWING THE CLASSICS. Here you'll find capsule reviews of vintage movies from the early days of cinema through the 1970s, with a special emphasis on sci-fi, horror, and mystery movies. Be sure to check out the Pages links, where you can find a Film Index of all my reviews, links to the reviews organized by cast members, directors, and other contributors, and links to my reviews of the films of talented young director Joshua Kennedy.

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Monday, January 18, 2016

The Atomic Kid (1954)

Starring Mickey Rooney, Robert Strauss, Elaine Davis, Bill Goodwin, Whit Bissell
Directed by Leslie H. Martinson
(actor & director credits courtesy

A young man is caught in an atomic blast, but somehow survives, and while the authorities try to cure him of his radiation, his best friend tries to exploit him financially.

A fun, light comedy from Rooney's production company, the film doesn't contain any laugh-out-loud moments, but it's so good natured and amiable, it left a smile on my face.  In contrast to later films in which Rooney tried to re-invent himself in more dramatic fare, this is as comforting as his Andy Hardy movies and MGM musicals, and his character is charming and easy to root for.  Rooney's real-life wife at the time plays the beautiful nurse he falls for, Strauss provides fine support, and Martinson deftly keeps things moving behind the camera with the same capable touch he provided in Batman and a plethora of television series.  Blake Edwards, later to find fame with his Pink Panther movies and TV series like Peter Gunn, provides the story.

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