“There’s his one true love — the cockeyed city of New York!”
New York’s flamboyant, song-writing mayor, Jimmy Walker (Bob Hope), has an open affair with a showgirl (Vera Miles) while dealing with charges of political corruption.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Alexis Smith Films
- Bob Hope Films
- New York City
- Paul Douglas Films
- Political Corruption
Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, this biopic of New York’s “dapper mayor” (who served in office from 1925 to 1936, until his resignation) is “brave in not overlooking Walker’s loveless marriage and infidelity or the corruption in his administration” — yet it ultimately doesn’t do justice to either issue. In one of his few non-comedic roles, Bob Hope looks “ill at ease” playing it straight, and is, as Peary notes, too “laid back”. Alexis Smith does a fine job playing Walker’s wife-in-name-only (as in Night and Day, she’s once again cast as the ice-blonde “trophy wife” of a famous man), but her character isn’t on-screen enough for us to learn anything significant about her. Similarly, Vera Miles is stunning and winsome as Walker’s mistress, but adds up to little more than a cliche. While movie audiences in 1957 may have been curious to learn more (however fictionalized) about the infamous “Beau James”, most viewers today won’t have the faintest clue what all the fuss was about.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Alexis Smith as Walker’s long-suffering wife
No. This one is only must-see for Bob Hope fans.