All Through The Night (1941)


Original plot
Slapstick, one-liners, sex jokes and … Nazis!?! Bogie stumbles on a sleeper cell in New York while being framed for murder.

Big thoughts
Bogie cold-cocks some dame just to shut her up and the ending effects look worse than the model train going around my Christmas tree. No wonder I never heard of this movie. Peter Lorre kills it though, as always. And props for making sure to match the amount of bullets in the revolver – I was counting!

The Random Remake
It’s the 1940s, and Al Donahue (Michael Fassbender!) is a former low-level Southern sports star who has moved on to recruiting at Humphrey College, a Southern powerhouse college. All through the night he drives and takes the bus from high school to high school, to try to evaluate athletes. One of his visits lands him with Freddie “Sunshine” Davis (Doc Shaw), a black player from a Texas high school hoping to go pro. Davis is clearly gifted but was left off of awards list because of racial bias. Donahue sees a star and tells Davis to keep up the fight and that he’ll be advocating for him.

Donahue gets resistance from the higher-ups when he starts his case for putting Sunshine on the team. They tell him the boosters will never let it go. One of those boosters, Charlie Ebbing (Tim Blake Nelson), even visits him at a local diner and intimidates him. Ebbing tells Donahue that he isn’t as well known in the town as the coach or the athletic director and that “no one would miss you.” But Donahue persists, even telling Davis to expect to matriculate in the fall. That’s when all hell breaks loose. Donahue is framed for beating up a local waitress Leda Hamilton (Katey Sagal) (who’s threatened to lie) and Donahue decides to hide out and try to clear his name. In that investigation he gets close to Ebbing’s underlings, posing as a racist. What he discovers one night is worse than threats to his college – the loose network plans to firebomb a nearby college’s facilities because of its integration. He sees Hamilton around and recruits her to his way – telling her he’s taking everyone down. But Donahue is uncovered by Ebbing, who plans to burn him in the fire. Donahue manages to get free with Hamilton’s help as Ebbing tries to set up the gas-canister bomb. Donahue wrests the gas canister free from Ebbing but it spills onto Ebbing and ignites from Ebbing’s torch, killing him. Later, Davis takes the field in his season debut, but the crowd is subdued. “This is just the start of a rough road, kid,” Donahue tells him. “All I care about is the end zone,” Davis replies.

The pitch
All Through The Night: The end zone is just the beginning

Next up: Strange Cargo (1940)


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