[Variety Reviews]

Sons of the Legion



MOVIES TELEVISION MAIN PHOTOS MUSIC IN PRINT ON-LINE


Previous Next Review Index


October 5th 1938

Miniature Review
'Sons of the Legion' (Par.)
Sop to the legionnaire and kiddie trade, but won't get either.

Sons of the Legion

Paramount production and release. Features Lynne Overman, Evelyn Keyes, Donald O'Connor, Elizabeth Patterson, William Frawley, Tim Holt, Billy Cook, Billy Lee. Directed by James Hogan. Original and screenplay, Lillie Hayward, Lewis Foster, Robret F. McGowan; editor, Anne Bauchens; camera, Charles Schoenbaum. At Criterion, N.Y., week Sept. 29, '38, dual. Running Time, 62 mins.
Butch Baker...............Donald O'Connor
Billy Lee.................Billy Lee
David Lee.................Billy Cook
Linda Lee.................Evelyn Keyes
Grandmother Lee...........Elizabeth Patterson
Steven Scott..............Tim Holt
Charles Lee...............Lynne Overman
Uncle William Lee.........William Frawley
State Commander...........Richard Tucker
Mickie....................Johnnie Morris
Harold....................Wally Albright
Red O'Flaherty............Benny Bartlett
Gunman Baker..............Edward Pawley
Margaret..................Lucille Ward
Boy.......................Ronnie Paige

_______

..... In a word, this one is pretty terrible. Obviously framed to cop the legionnaire trade and incidentally lure the moppets, the film neglects to supply any entertainement. What's more, the unashamed flag-waving is enough to make the most rabid Legionnaire blush, while it's juvenile slant will seem puerile event to the urchins.
..... Story deals with the formation, by a Rover Boy hero, of an organization, Sons of the American Legion, to 'teach the younger generation the principle and ideals of Americanism.' But the father of two of the lads, hiding the fact that he was dishonorably discharged from the army, behind his refusal to join the Legion, won't let them become members of the new group. The yarn lurches into melodrama, with an auto chase of an escaped convict and the reformation of a gutter-bred toughie. Of course, the dishonorably dischared vet is vindicated and there is a flag-flying, bands-playing, men-marching finale. But not a moment is plausible.
..... Almost the only bright spot in the entire picture is Lynne Overman's performance as the bedeviled father. The part is no Hamlet, but his skillfully reticent playing gives it considerable quiet conviction. Probably it won't occur to studio execs to give him other parts out of his familiar groove, but it at least demonstrates that Overman isn't as limited an actor as his sterotype roles have indicated.
..... Elizabeth Patterson's experience enables her to redeem an opaque part to some extent, and William Frawley is competent in a stock characterization, but the others are pretty dreadful. James Hogan's direction is heavy-handed. 'Sons of the Legion' will get skimpy reception. Hobe.



Previous Next Review Index



All reviews are copyright by and their repsective reviewers. Unfortunately their web site doesn't have anything older than two years, so consider us your local library.


MOVIES TELEVISION MAIN PHOTOS MUSIC IN PRINT ON-LINE

T 'N' T INDEX T 'N' T TOP TENS PORT CHUCKLES STAR TREK A-TEAM

You have reached http://muppetlabs.com/~davidj/tnt/oconnor/variety/legion.htm

Disclaimer: We are in no way officially sanctioned by or connected to Donald O'Connor, or anyone else for that matter. None of the content of this website is meant to infringe upon any copyrights held by studios, companies, authors, other web site owners or stray individuals.

Anything original is copyright 1999 by Teresa and Tracy Murray (a.k.a. T 'n' T).

Please send us lots and lots of e-mail at tntmur@aol.com

Number of people convinced the critics are usually wrong: