Thursday, 11 June 2015

No.219 : Woman on the Run

Woman on the Run at the IMDb

First off, this film’s title is a complete misnomer. If you want to watch a woman on the run, look elsewhere. It’s the husband who is on the run, the wife is merely looking for him. ‘Woman Looking For Her Husband Who is on the Run’ should have been the title even if it is less exciting.

The film opens with Frank Johnston out walking his dog when he chances upon a man being shot in his car. We don’t know if it’s a robbery or extreme dogging at first, but the victim takes two in the belly for his trouble. Frank sees the whole thing and unfortunately catches the attention of the killer who pops two slugs straight into Frank’s head for being so nosy. Thankfully it was the shadow of Frank’s head that took the bullets, but that’s one shadow that will tell no tales.

Rather than do the sensible thing of running away Frank tells the cops he saw the whole event. It turns out that the victim was a witness against a major bad guy but all is not lost - Frank can take over as the bullet magnet and testify against the villain for this new crime. Understandably Frank gets cold feet and buggers off as soon as he can.

The cops aren't happy and head to Frank’s home where they meet his bitch of a wife, Eleanor. She couldn't give two shits about Frank’s predicament as the marriage is on the rocks. She shows the cops Frank’s paintings and generally runs him down. She softens however when a reporter shows up and offers some big bucks if she can help trace the fleeing Frank and get him the exclusive story. But wait! That ‘reporter’ looks a lot like the gunman - well he is one and the same after all.

Eleanor gets a cryptic message from Frank and she and the reporter follow the clues about town. Over the course of their travels she finds details about how much Frank really loves her and that he has a heart condition, that he’s kept secret from her. As she starts to doubt the reporter’s credentials can Eleanor has to find a way to get Frank's Heart medicine to him while also keeping the bad guy from silencing her man, whom she now loves after all?

This was a pretty decent ‘B’ movie with not a lot invested in sets or action but enough happens to keep you interested. Top billing goes to Ann Sheridan as Eleanor but she wasn't too convincing as the scornful wife who went all doe eyed after seeing a couple of portraits and hearing the medical news - Frank must have some decent life insurance tucked away!

The bad guy masquerading as a reporter was a lot more likeable and I was hoping he’d get away after rubbing out wet fish Frank - fat chance. The clues and deduction were well handled and the drip feed of information kept the level of interest up. The showdown at the fairground went as you’d imagine, but it was a decent ride to get there.

To be fair Eleanor does break into a slight trot at some points to justify the ‘On the run’ title but a better title couldn't have been that hard to find - maybe ladies running was what brought the punters in in the 1950’s? Anyway this is  a decent offering that although ‘by the numbers’ had enough to justify the viewing.

Best Bit - Your second ride is half price!
‘W’ Score 15/23

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