17 August 2019 | boblipton
John Carroll Is Even-Tempered: Mad All The Time
John Carroll is a gangster. that's what the D.A. says, even though Carroll says he's just in the entertainment industry, running a nightclub. When the DA's son is killed in an accident at Carroll's joint, Carroll's on the hook for manslaughter. On advice, he tries a Robin Hood act, including taking care of orphan Martin Spellman. As time goes on and the pressure mounts, Carroll develops real fondness for the boy.
Unfortunately for this Monogram production, Carroll's role is written so he spells in short, disconnected sentences, and he adopts a pugnacious manner. It's not inconsistent with the character, but it's unvarying and not very interesting, totally unsuitable for developing much sympathy for him. Director William Nigh can't seem to do much to overcome this; as someone whose career as a director peaked in the early 1920s, he never seemed to have adapted to the balancing dialogue and action to tell a balanced story.