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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Movie: The Lone Wolf and His Lady


The Lone Wolf and His Lady
Based on characters created by Louis Joseph Vance
1949


The Lone Wolf and His Lady is the seventh Lone Wolf movie I've reviewed and it's also the last one produced. This will probably not come as a surprise to anyone who's actually seen it. In terms of plot and execution it's actually pretty standard Lone Wolf stuff. Which is to say that it rolls out the boilerplate plot of having a priceless jewel stolen and suspicion focusing on a certain retired jewel thief, who then has to crack the case so that he can clear his name.

Which is all fine and dandy and it's a plot that's worked quite nicely in the other installments where I've seen it used. The problem here is Ron Randell, whose portrayal of Michael Lanyard/The Lone Wolf lacks even one speck of the sophistication that Warren William brought to the role. Even Gerald Mohr, who took over for William in three of the later installments, did a better job.

As for the wisecracking sidekick/butler/valet, Jamison, Alan Mowbray is a very poor substitute for the comic antics of Eric Blore, who took on this key role in numerous installments. I have to admit that I found Blore rather annoying at first, but he grew on me over time and I found myself wishing he'd been on board for this one.

This might have been a decent enough, if rather insubstantial piece of work, if you hadn't seen any other Lone Wolf movies. But, quite frankly, if you're going to start watching these movies you really owe it to yourself to go with one of the installments that star William and Blore.

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