Saturday, June 8, 2013

Off Limits (1953)

Director: George Marshall

Starring: Bob Hope, Mickey Rooney, Marilyn Maxwell, Eddie Mayehoff, Stanley Clements, Jack Dempsey, Marvin Miller, Carolyn Jones, Charles Bronson

More info: IMDb

Tagline: It's Hilarious!

Plot: Wally Hogan has things going his way. He is the manager-trainer of Bullet Bradley, a fighter who has just won the lightweight championship. Life suddenly takes a not-so-happy turn, however, when Bullet gets drafted. Hogan's gangster partners "persuade him to enlist and keep an eye on the fighter, who is subsequently declared psychologically unfit for the Army. Enter Herbet Tuttle, a draftee eager to have Hogan turn him into a fighter. Hogan Reluctantly agrees only after he discovers Tuttle's aunt is the beautiful singer at a nightclub. From then on it's a case of stringing Tuttle along while trying to get close to his aunt. To further complicate Hogan's life there is a rulebook Military Police Officer who tries to squish the shenanigans.

My rating: 6.5/10

Will I watch it again? No.

#13 on Project: Badass Charles Bronson

LEVEL OF BADASSICITY (10 being the highest): 6 (Unfortunately the camera that filmed his badass self kicking the shit out of everyone in the room (see boxing pic below) was destroyed by the government in an effort to keep secret our greatest weapon.  Not even the lens survived as the Rooskies could have used black magic to remove the images from the glass).

It's been at least 20 years since I saw a Bob Hope picture.  This is pretty damn funny and it's mainly due to Hope and his quick and pointed wit.  He's good.

Mickey Rooney is also fast with the dialogue and he's loaded with energy (which is exactly what the part needed).  The rest of the cast fulfills their roles in providing fodder for Hope and there are a lot of laughs.  One of the best things about this picture is seeing how Hope gets himself into (and out of) some real messes. The real reason I watched this, though, was for Charles Bronson.

Maybe his role was cut or IMDb is incorrect.  According to IMDb his character has a name, but in 1953 I seriously doubt they'd actually assign a name to someone who's literally only seen in the background and for a few scant seconds.  I'm sure Bronson intimidated them into making more of his part than was already there.  He's on screen kicking the bejesus out of some cat while the funny man does his business.  I bet Bob Hope spent the rest of his days living in fear of his life that one day he'd snuff it at the hands of Bronson for not making him the star of the picture.

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