DEVIL’S CARGO. 1948

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In the week that I discovered that a professional magician called John Calvert had played The Falcon in three films, I also discovered that Mr Calvert had passed away.
I had never heard of John Calvert, either as an actor or as a magician. I saw Devil’s Cargo and found it had one of the oddest castings I’ve ever seen.

John. Calvert

John Calvert

This ‘Falcon’ is called Mike Watling. Don’t ask me why.(Isn’t he usually called ‘Gay Lawrence’, or the Falcon’s brother is ‘Tom Lawrence’).
The plot has a man coming to the Falcon’s apartment and telling him that he has killed his wife. While they wait for the police to arrive, the Falcon shows the man some tricks. Honestly!
It’s so unreal. Calvert doesn’t really play the character.He’s just himself,charming and suave – and continually displaying his magic skills! (And he’s good).
Rest of the cast includes the alway likeable Roscoe Karns as the policeman in charge of the investigation. Rochelle Hudson as the murdered man’s wife, and Lyle Talbot as the obligatory gangster.

I’m afraid Mr Calvert as The Falcon didn’t work for me. I understand from IMDB that he was a very popular magician in America for most of his long life.

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