30 January 2020 | boblipton
Starts Out... And Changes
At first I thought I was looking at an uncredited remake of TO HAVE AND TO HAVE NOT. Richard Denning runs a boat out of Key West that takes guys out fishing for tarpon.his assistant, called 'Rummy' isn't Walter Brennan, but Percy Helton. Soon, however, it turns out that he is a part of a smuggling operation. George Zucco hires him for a spot of gun running. When he drops off the gums and picks up the money, however, there Zucco's secretary, Barbara Fuller and a dangerous-looking man, there to make sure he doesn't run off with Zucco's money. An hour out of the Key, however, they take the money and throw Denning overboard to drown.
Instead, he's picked up by a boat of Greek-American sponge divers. They take him back to their home in Tarpon Springs, where he falls in love with the family's daughter, Aline Towne. However, there are bad people looking for him: Zucco, who thinks Denning has run off with his money, and Miss Fuller and friend, who don't want him found.
There are some oddities in the screenplay. Denning's character is nicknamed 'Brooklyn'. Although we're supposed to believe he comes from the Borough of Churches, he seems never to have heard of Christianity before.
Nonetheless, it's a good, if derivative movie. Director R.G. Springsteen, who usually helmed westerns, gets nice performances out of his actors, and cinematographer John MacBurnie shoots in a nice mix of noirish lighting and sun-dappled underwater photography.
Although this Republic production was not meant to win any awards, it's a good mix for a second feature, with a mix of excitement, romance and warmth that makes mid-century films interesting for people who enjoy a well-told yarn.