The Whip Hand

Go down

The Whip Hand

Post by Bruce R on Sun May 29, 2016 12:45 pm

A surprisingly good 1951 noir, THE WHIP HAND stars Elliot Reid as a reporter that senses something is not quite right in a remote town in which he can't catch any fish. Raymond Burr does his usual good job as a heavy. Considering how many of his early rolls were as a heavy it's somewhat surprising he would have some day become the prototypical Perry Mason. I guess a good actor can do those types of things.

William Cameron Menzies directed and Howard Hughes was one of the producers.

I had the following note attached to this film from some IMDb viewer, which I think might be of interest:

"I was 12 years old when I first learned of this film from reading John Baxters chapter on William Cameron Menzies in his ground breaking book "Science Fiction in The Cinema.' The plot concerning germ warfare and Baxters praise of the film made me want to see it. I later learned from other sources that this film was made from a finished film called THE MAN HE FOUND, about Adolph Hitler being alive and well and living the USA. RKO studio heads did not like the film and ordered a new story written and new footage shot that would use as much footage from THE MAN HE FOUND as possible. This made me want to see it even more. But for years this film eluded me. It never showed up on TV, never shown as part of a Menzies retrospective and never turned up officially on video. It then turned up in the early 1990's late one night on TNT, where I taped it and have watched several times since.

While I found the film of some interest, I can certainly say Baxter over praised this film. Its not a bad cold war era espionage thriller, but other than the plot, its nothing special either. It is no doubt the least interesting of Menzies fantastic films that he both designed and directed. The court yard where infected guinea pigs wander around like zombies and Otto Waldis's lab are of some visual interest, but over all there isn't much of Menzies design genius evident. To comment on his direction is pointless, because Menzies was never a good director of actors. The reshooting and incorporating old scenes with the new scenes is done fairly well. I noticed where new scenes were inserted, but only because I was looking for them. Note that this film uses a lot of close ups. Otto Waldis as the former Nazi scientist, now working for Russian Communists is a bit hard to take. He praises his new adopted ideology. While its true Nazism and Communism have more in common then with western style democracy, most of the Nazi scientists who went to work for the Commies after the war did so more out of pragmatic and mercenary reasons than ideological ones. IMDb viewer."

Bruce R

Bruce R

Posts : 265
Join date : 2015-07-08

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: The Whip Hand

Post by inDefiance on Tue May 31, 2016 5:18 am

This one was on TCM this past January. I found it to be pretty watchable, although with some expected plot issues. Raymond Burr is generally entertaining as a heavy. It's available from Warner Archive, also. Again, thanks for your reviews, Bruce.

inDefiance

Posts : 4
Join date : 2015-07-09

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: The Whip Hand

Post by garyleeoz on Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:51 pm

"The WhipHand" would have made more of an impact to a 1950s audience that hadn't seen the likes of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" or "the Invaders". So the idea of a whole town being taken over by "invaders living among us" was still something relatively new.

Raymond Burr was very lucky with winning the Perry Mason role. Originally he was asked to audition for "Hamilton Burger" (the producers must have seen him as the District Attorney in "a Place in the Sun") but he also asked to try out for the Perry role as well. Fortunately for him, he impressed Erle Stanley Gardner (who hated the way Perry had been portrayed in the early Warners movies).

garyleeoz

Posts : 46
Join date : 2015-07-14

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: The Whip Hand

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum