Only Angels Have Wings, 1939

This film shows the risks taken by pilots flying the mail back and forth from island to island. They’re separated by mountains and ocean. The ship that drops off a mail bag also drops off Bonnie Lee, played by Jean Arthur. She doesn’t get back on it because she’s fascinated by Cary Grant, who plays Geoff Carter, the man who manages the pilots. He’s not interested in her or any other woman. Bonnie knows that means he was hurt by someone. When that someone comes to the airport as the wife of a pilot who wants a job, Geoff has to face his history.

The new pilot, Bat MacPherson, is ashamed of his reputation among the pilots because of his past, but doesn’t want his wife to know. He’s given all of the dangerous jobs: flying to places others deem too dangerous or flying in weather that is too stormy.

Geoff struggles to persevere through deaths of his pilots and financial woes. Bonnie sees Geoff’s character through the difficulties of his job and falls for him.

Richard Barthelmess plays Bat MacPherson, who is the husband of Judy MacPherson, played by Rita Hayworth. He was one of the thirty-six founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and he only acted in three more films after this.

I also enjoyed Kid Dabb, played by Thomas Mitchell. He acted in 103 movies and TV series, notably as Gerald O’Hara in Gone with the Wind 1939, as Doc Boone in Stagecoach 1939, as Uncle Billy in It’s a Wonderful Life 1946, and as Mayor Henderson in High Noon 1952.

Director Howard Hawks made action-adventure films like Only Angels Have Wings and comedies like Bringing Up Baby, 1938. Cary Grant was in both of those.

No comments: