Saturday, September 29, 2007


Lyle Talbot is "3-Star" Halsey, a hot shot pilot for Trans America Airlines. He's sweet on stewardess Ann Dvorak, who loves him but is mildly disapproving of his showboating ways. More sensible pilot George (Gordon Westcott) also likes Ann, but mostly stays out of the way. A government man (Henry O'Neill) wants Talbot and his co-pilot, Ann's brother Tom, to take a job flying a scientist and his top-secret explosive to Washington, but when we see that an assistant (Arthur Pierson) has bugged the office and heard the conversation, we know there is skullduggery afoot. Sure enough, Westcott is a bad guy, and when Talbot is waylaid via fisticuffs over a pinball game, Westcott flies the plane instead. It explodes in mid-air and we discover that Westcott, who planned the whole thing, stole the explosive and parachuted out of the plane just before it exploded, leaving co-pilot Tom and the scientist to die. Dvorak comes upon Westcott and his cronies and they plan to get her to smuggle the explosive to Tijuana, but Talbot eventually comes to the rescue. This is a decent enough second feature, and Talbot makes a good hero, though Dvorak is rather bland as his romantic interest. The flying footage is good, even when it involves miniatures. I liked the fact that in the climactic air chase, the bad guy's plane is black. [TCM]

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