14 November 2007 | horn-5
If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.
Thie feature film consists of three episodes of the syndicated-television series "Racket Squad" stitched together and sold to theatre-exhibitors as a real movie. It opens at the Los Angeles Police Academy with a lecturer telling the class of LAPD-rookies three stories of confidence rackets.
Story 1: A taxi-dancer meets a small-time racketeer and becomes partners with him in some small-time scams. Another racketeer, playing for bigger stakes, gets her to join up with him. They gain access to a wealthy man's home by pretending to be a photographer-writer team sent by a magazine to photograph his palatial home. The police arrive in time to stop the burglary. They arrive in time only because the small-time,sore-loser, ex-boyfriend had gone to the police department and snitched on them.
Story 2: A crooked stock-syndicate swindles a wealthy newspaper publisher out of $40,000 with the aid of a glamorous sophisticated woman as a decoy. A snitch many have been involved here, also.
Story 3: A crippled young man shows up in Smallville and buys a dilapidated, abandoned farm for $1750, spot-cash American. The townspeople, always ready to add a new citizen to the tax-roll, help him fix it up and he becomes a sympathetic and popular citizen in the community, especially with the pretty female real-estate broker. He claims the spring on his property has a therapeutic healing effect on his crippling arthritis and, considering he showed up in a wheelchair and is now running and jumping all over the place, the town-council is now ready to buy back the formerly-worthless property for $50,000, and let the budding-decathlon star walk away with a net profit of $48,250 on his two-bit investment. And he would have, too, if the L.A.P.D. hadn't shown up with proof he was never crippled and didn't have arthritis. Yes, that's correct, the pretty female real-estate broker had overheard him discussing his plans with a confederate...and snitched on him. But young Clark Kent was having some doubts about this character, also.
The end of the film leaves the viewer with one question and two-lessons learned:
Question 1: What in heck was the Los Angeles Police Department doing busting citizens outside of the Los Angeles city limits in Smallville?
Lesson 1: Never under-estimate the value of a Snitch.
Lesson 2: Never under-estimate the ability of American film-goers to line up and pay money to see a film in a theatre that they could have stayed home and seen for free on television.