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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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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Lightning Strikes Twice (1934)

Starring Ben Lyon, Thelma Todd, Pert Kelton, Laura Hope Crews, Skeets Gallagher
Directed by Ben Holmes
(actor & director credits courtesy IMDB.com)

A wealthy playboy's plans for a reunion with his fiancee are spoiled by a murder investigation and a vaudeville couple looking to extort money from him.

This comedy-mystery isn't a particularly funny one, and wastes the talents of Todd, who per Wikipedia, made a name for herself in slapstick comedy shorts, but doesn't get to participate in any of  the comic scenes here.  The film actually feels like a two-reel short stretched out to feature length without care paid to the spacing of gags throughout the film, and although it piles complication upon complication to the mistaken identity plot, there's never a sense that the playboy isn't going to be able to work everything out by picture's end.  It's still enjoyable in it's own right, but it's no comedy classic.

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