The Power and the Glory/Me and My Gal/Stanley and Livingstone [3 Discs] [DVD]

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Overview

Synopsis

The Power and the Glory
Frequently cited as the precursor to Citizen Kane, Power and the Glory is the first major Hollywood film to extensively utilize narrated flashbacks to tell its story. At the funeral of a powerful railroad executive (Spencer Tracy), the exec's best friend (Ralph Morgan) recalls the dead man's colorful but tragic life. We see Tracy's early years as a trackwalker and his marriage to Colleen Moore, who helps him rise to the top. At first, Tracy is a kindly man, a fair minded employer and a devoted husband and father, but his ever-increasing power corrupts him. He leaves Moore for an adventuress (Helen Vinson), whereupon his wife commits suicide. Tracy later kills himself as well when he learns that his second wife has been unfaithful with his grown son. The "narrative" technique used to relate the plotline of Power and the Glory is interesting, though the film itself is a bit too cut-and-dried (suicide seems to be a logical solution rather than a last desperate move) and far too short (76 minutes) to do justice to its central character. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Me and My Gal
Danny Dolan (Spencer Tracy) is a good-hearted, streetwise waterfront beat cop in New York City who gets promoted to detective when he saves the life of a drunk (Will Stanton) who falls into the river. He also strikes up an acquaintanceship with Helen Riley (Joan Bennett), a wisecracking waitress at a nearby diner, which leads to a potential romance. Each one's bravado and tough self-image, however, prevents them from admitting how they feel about each other. Also getting in the way of their romance are Detective Allen (Adrian Morris), who permitted wanted hood Duke Castenega (George Walsh -- the director's brother) to slip off of a boat and into the country while Danny was making his rescue; and Helen's dimwitted sister Kate (Marion Burns), who used to date Duke, but is now marrying dull, steady, loyal merchant seaman Eddie Collins (George Chandler). She can't quite push Duke out of her life, and when he breaks prison and turns up trying to hide out in Kate's home, she's foolish enough to hide him. It falls to Eddie's father (Henry B. Walthall), a paralyzed World War I veteran, to try and warn Danny and save his son's wife and their marriage. ~ Bruce Eder, Rovi

Stanley and Livingstone
Twentieth Century-Fox borrowed Spencer Tracy, from MGM for the sprawling (yet economically produced) historical drama Stanley and Livingstone. Tracy plays 19th-century American journalist Henry M. Stanley, an adventure-prone sort who is assigned by his editor (Henry Hull) to locate lost Scottish missionary David Livingstone (Sir Cedric Hardwicke) in darkest Africa. There are perils aplenty before the inevitable meeting in the clearing, capped by the immortal courtesy "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" Though seriously ill, Livingstone is content ministering to the natives, declining Stanley's invitation to return home. Upon arriving back to civilization, Stanley tells his story of Dr. Livingstone, but without tangible proof, he is accused of perpetrating a fraud. Only at the very last moment is Stanley vindicated; at this point, he decides to go back to Africa to continue the late Dr. Livingstone's work. This didn't happen in real life, nor is the studio-dictated romance between Spencer Tracy and Nancy Kelly completely copacetic with the facts; outside of this, Stanley and Livingstone comes pretty close to living up to Fox's ad-campaign slogan "The Most Heroic Exploit the World Has Known." ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Spencer Tracy
    Spencer Tracy - Tom Gardner
  • Colleen Moore
    Colleen Moore - Sally Garner
  • Ralph Morgan
    Ralph Morgan - Henry
  • Helen Vinson
    Helen Vinson - Eve Borden
  • Image coming soon
    Clifford Jones - Tom Garner, Jr.

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