Movie Diary 8/29/2009

The Boys are Back (Scott Hicks, 2009). Clive Owen in Australia, being a parent with an eccentric set of rules. This is certainly a typical Scott Hicks movie.

The Mayor of Hell (Archie Mayo, 1933). James Cagney appears in about half of this Warners bleeding-heart offering, with Frankie Darro leading the group of reform-school miscreants; the effective opening reel gives a good account of how the decent kids got here (drunk and/or clueless parents being the most common reason). Some of the action is pretty far-fetched but the sympathy for the boys is still remarkable. Kind of a warm-up for Boys Town.

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