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Strictly Dynamite

(1934 b 71')

En: 5 Ed: 4

Based on a play by Robert T. Colwell and Robert A. Simon, a writer makes money writing gags for a radio personality and ignores his wife.

On a radio show the Mills Brothers sing, and Moxie (Jimmy Durante) performs a skit with Vera (Lupe Velez). Writer Nick Montgomery (Norman Foster) tells his wife Sylvia (Marian Nixon) that he lost his job, and she suggests he write for radio. Moxie and Vera sing "Puddy In Your Hands." Rivers (Berton Churchill) says Moxie needs better writing. Georgie Ross (William Gargan) looks for a gag writer, and Sylvia shows him Nick's sketch for Moxie. Moxie orders dinner from bed. Vera tells him to get dressed, and he shaves his barber. Georgie tells Nick to update jokes from books and sends Sylvia out to call every five minutes. Moxie comes in, and Nick theorizes about humor. A soused Vera arrives, and Georgie gets Moxie to pay Nick $500 a week.

Cowboy Sourwood Sam (Eugene Palette) sings a new song for Moxie in Nick's office. Nick leaves Vera to come in late to see Sylvia, who is worried about him. Moxie argues with Vera over Nick's script but gives in to her. On the air Moxie does jokes with Vera but breaks off to sing "Hot Potato." Vera gets angry with him. At her party Vera kisses Nick and sings to him "Oh Me, Oh My, Oh You." They run out together. In a taxi Sylvia asks Georgie to kiss her; but Vera takes Nick to Atlantic City.

Nick returns to his office. Vera goes in and sits on his lap, as Georgie comes in. He lectures Nick and tells him to get rid of Vera. Moxie's bodyguard (Stanley Fields) is waiting for Nick. Moxie arrives, fires Nick, and leaves with Vera, who goes back to scold Nick. Sylvia comes in, and Vera says good-bye. Nick tells Sylvia he's not in love with Vera; but she says they're through. Georgie tells Nick to get a new agent and quits. Georgie offers Sylvia a job selling scripts, and she admires Nick's writing.

After three weeks Nick returns to his closed office after alcohol rehabilitation. Elmer Fleming (Sterling Holloway) tells Nick he looks terrible and calls Sylvia, who is sending out Nick's writings. Moxie calls Nick and tells Fleming he is coming over. Nick is afraid and runs out. Moxie gets Nick's poetry in the mail, chases Nick's taxi, and finds him with Sylvia. Moxie kisses Nick, because he likes his poetry. Georgie shows Moxie more poetry by Nick, and Moxie recites some lines, as his bodyguard cries. Georgie sells Moxie Nick's poems for $600 each. Sylvia and Nick are going back home. Vera comes in with two babies. Nick kisses Sylvia, and Georgie gives them the money.

Moxie's many malapropisms mangle meaning, adding to the hilarity of this otherwise typical comedy of a young writer spoiled by success.

Copyright © 2000 by Sanderson Beck

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