Devil’s Cargo

Gay Stanhope Falcon, a.k.a “The Falcon”, was a popular character that appeared in a short story in the 1940’s, was described as a freelance adventurer and troubleshooter, and went on to become a film character in various forms, as well as a radio series. This film was one of the last three made, and in this incarnation his name was Michael “The Falcon” Watling, and he was a detective.

However, in this 1948 film he was played by John Calvert, a magician who had a very long career (he died at 102 years old), and was cited by Siegfried & Roy as an inspiration. So in the film he was always doing sleight of hand tricks on almost everyone he met. In one particular scene early in the film he was giving a guy a tour of the tricks in his living room, some were pretty good too. His acting was not too bad, “The Falcon” was a suave, debonair dude who very well could have been an inspiration for Sean Connery, Angela Landsbury, or Ian Ogilvy.

The film itself was typical low budget fourties fare, but the murder/mystery story was entertaining and twisty-turny, and was only 62 minutes long. The Falcon’s real name in the earlier films was Tom Lawrence, but in this film he was Michael Watling, and it seems the actors were saying his old name when it was being filmed as the new name was badly dubbed in on top.

I found this entertaining, and the magic tricks were a novelty.

Date watched: June 5th
Score: 7/10
Film count 2016: 93

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