22 October 2019 | museumofdave
Tropical Delights To Be Savored
"She's been in more laps than a napkin," Shelley remarks about another girl who hangs out at the local tropical gin mill, in another post-WWII thriller, only without the thrills. What the film does offer is an amiably sleazy atmosphere, and that curious leading man MacDonald Carey, accused of dealing with the enemy, and while wanting to clear himself encounters Shelley singing one of her several dubbed songs; it's not exactly Actor's Studio stuff, but she seemed to be more than game to toss it around and chat up Liberace, who, in his first screen appearance, plays Chopin to the rowdy seafaring men--and later on in the film, in a completely absurd moment, is pounding out some curious up-the-piano, down-the-piano, concerto backed by an orchestra we never see, lights at the party dimmed discreetly so Lee can have his moment. It takes about the first 20 minutes for this film to find it's melodramatic feet, but there's a crafty, sleazy villain who loves to slap tender cheeks (Luther Adler), some tight-lipped servants hiding in the shadows gathering secrets, and a the leading lady in various Orry-Kelly outfits heaving her craft with wonderful energy: will she have another Orange Blossom or a double martini--dry?