31 December 2011 | Michael_Elliott
Performances Make the Film Worth Watching
Dark Hazard (1934)
** 1/2 (out of 4)
Great performances highlight this Warner melodrama about professional gambler Jim Turner (Edward G. Robinson), a man who decides to get married and stop his old ways of life or at least that's what he tells his new bride (Genevieve Tobin). Soon the two are on their way but Jim becomes addicted to gambling and it reaches the point to where the wife decides to leave him. DARK HAZARD is working with a "C" screenplay to say the least but there's no question that the cast is an exceptionally strong one and helps keep the film from falling apart. I think it goes without saying but Robinson easily steals the film as the down-on-his-luck gambler who places one bet too many. At least the role has quite a bit for the actor to do as he not only gets to play the gambler but there's romance, some laughs and a tender side story involving him an a race dog whose name is the title of the film. Robinson perfectly nails all the emotions and is certainly very believable in the scenes where the character breaks from all his gambling. Tobin is also pretty good in the film and it's clear that she and Robinson has some good chemistry together. They had previously made the horrid I LOVED A WOMAN but at least this role gives the two something to work with. Glenda Farrell plays her typical blonde/sex appeal part and does fine work with it. Sidney Toler has a hilarious bit early on picking on Robinson for a certain reason. Henry B. Walthall is mentioned in the credits but while his character's name is said, he never actually appears in the movie so I'm guessing his scene was edited out. Overall, DARK HAZARD features great actors doing strong work but in order for the film to have been better the screenplay still needed some work. At just 72-minutes there's not too much meat but fans of the cast will still want to check it out.