Here Comes Trouble

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There has been so much drama and chaos in politics lately that I needed a bit of a break. So I went to the Internet Archive and found a nice, relaxing, fun little film. Here Comes Trouble was released March 15, 1948. It is actually part of a movie series that was very popular during World War II. In 1941, film makers combined actor William Tracy, as Sergeant Dodo Doubleday, the innocent looking nerd with a photographic memory, with actor Joe Sawyer, as the rough and tough Sergeant William Ames, in the WWII buddy film Tanks a Million. Dodo and Ames proved such a popular, money-making duo that four more films set during the war soon followed. The series was revived after the end of World War II with three more films but none of them ever recaptured the popularity of the earlier movies and the series faded into history. Our film, Here Comes Trouble, is the sixth in the series and finds our trouble prone pair trying to adapt to life after the war. Dodo and his girlfriend, Penny (played by Beverly Lloyd), want to get married. Penny got her father, newspaper publisher “Windy” Blake (Emory Parnell), to give Dodo his old job of copy boy back. But he needs a better paying job before they can get married. Blake has been using his newspaper to crusade against local gangsters and the gangsters have been attacking and scaring off his reporters. When Penny wants a better paying job for Dodo, Blake decides to make Dodo his newest reporter in hopes the gangsters will run poor Dodo out of town and the wedding will be off. But Dodo has reconnected with his old friend Sergeant Ames, who is now a local cop eager to take down the gang, and the two are soon neck deep in blackmail and murder and determined to get the gang before the gang gets them. Here Comes Trouble is the sixth in the Dodo-Ames series. The series, in order, includes:
1). Tanks a Million (1941)
2). Hay Foot (1942)
3) About Face (1942)
4). Fall In (1942)
5). Yanks Ahoy (1943)
6). Here Comes Trouble (1948)
7). As You Were (1951)
8). Mr. Walkie Talkie (1952)

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William Tracy, as Dodo, has an innocent looking face and is completely clueless as his soon-to-be father-in-law plots to get rid of him, other reporters play tricks on him, and the gangsters come after him. Joe Sawyer, as Ames, is an earnest but bumbling cop who just cannot seem to make an arrest stick. The two of them bumble their way through ridiculous situations and finally into a hilarious slapstick chase scene as they try to solve the crimes. That final chase is a mad race backstage and onstage at a burlesque house that involves Dodo and Ames, the gangsters, more cops, the newspaper publisher and his wife and his daughter, and assorted clowns and is a total laugh riot. But despite that final fun chase, Here Comes Trouble falls a bit flat. Dodo is just a bit too innocent and too clueless (especially in an earlier scene when the other reporters make Dodo up like a clown and he has no clue at all). And Dodo and Ames are supposed to be old army buddies with a long history of getting into and out of jams but I just did not feel any chemistry between them in this movie. The end result is Here Comes Trouble is lightweight fun, the final chase is great, but whatever chemistry the two stars had must have ended with World War II. The Dodo-Ames series limped along for two more films then faded into the sunset. However, I did like that Dodo and even his conniving publisher boss were good old-fashioned crusading reporters out to take down corruption. Especially when a certain not-to-be-named modern-day idiot megalomaniac presidential-wannabe keeps insulting modern crusading reporters and trying to hide his own corruption under moronic claims of “fake news”. Arrrrrrgh! I just cannot get away from politics even when watching a harmlessly funny little film. I swear that orange skinned combed-over idiot is everywhere.

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Anyways. Here Comes Trouble is fun just not a fun as it could have been. It clocks in at 51 minutes and 42 seconds so it is perfect for a quick break away from modern troubles. The audio quality is good but the video quality is a bit fuzzy and blurry. Also the color looks a bit weird because Here Comes Trouble was filmed in Cinecolor. Cinecolor was a process that was much, much cheaper than Technicolor and could be used in modified black-and-white cameras. While Cinecolor produced some vibrant colors, other colors were muted. Those muted colors combined with the blurriness of age gives Here Comes Trouble a different look that took me a few minutes to get used to. I kept wondering where the color went to. Here Comes Trouble was the only film in the Dodo-Ames series produced in Cinecolor (there are also black-and-white prints), all the other films are black-and-white only. Here Comes Trouble is FREE to download or watch online at the Internet Archive just click the link. IA also has the first two films in the series: Tanks a Million and three different versions of Hay Foot, Version #1, Version #2, and Version #3.

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