The Half-Naked Truth (1932)

Passed   |    |  Comedy, Romance

The Half-Naked Truth (1932) Poster

A barker at a down-at-the-heels carnival becomes a powerhouse New York publicity man as he transforms a sideshow dancer into a Broadway sensation.


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28 October 2012 | csteidler
| Great cast of fast talkers in unpredictable comedy
Lee Tracy and Lupe Velez are outstanding as press agent and circus dancer in this wild comedy of ambitious impostors. Tracy is a supremely fast talker….but Velez is probably right when she exclaims repeatedly that he's "Nothing but a four flusher!"

A fun supporting cast includes Frank Morgan as big shot Broadway producer Merle Farrell, complete with long cigarette holder that he can't quite handle…and the great Eugene Palette as a circus escape artist who tags along with Tracy to the big city as a sort of assistant schemer.

The plot may be somewhat uneven but this picture certainly has its moments. One sensational highlight is Lupe's song-and-dance on Broadway, in which she starts out stumblingly but changes her tune and wins over everyone, including the initially-shocked highbrow producer Morgan.

Eugene Palette's scene staging a publicity stunt in a nudist colony is also hilarious. He shushes a companion complaining about the dress code: "You're lucky it ain't winter."

Energetic performances and some spicy dialog produce plenty of laughs; Tracy and Velez pull off the rapid-fire love-hate bit superbly. If it's a bit inconsistent, this picture is nevertheless full of goofy surprises that keep us watching. Very entertaining.

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