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THE GAY FALCON (1941) ***

After portraying the sleuthing Saint, George Sanders moved to RKO to take on the similar role of The Falcon.  This one is the first in the series.  And FYI, the title refers to his first name, “Gay” and not his sexual preference because he’s definitely a ladies man. 


The Falcon is engaged to be married and promises his bride-to-be to give up his crime-solving ways.  He takes a job as a Wall Street broker but is lured out of retirement to investigate a rash of jewelry thefts centering around a wealthy socialite.  When the jewel thieves frame The Falcon’s bumbling sidekick for multiple murders, Gay tries to clear his name and bring the villains to justice.


I’ve always been a fan of these 40’s B Movie Detective Programmers.  While The Falcon series lacks the panache of The Saint films, they nevertheless get the job done.  What really makes this one work is the charisma of Sanders as the smooth-talking, suave-ass, spinach juice-drinking Falcon.  He’s pretty much a pimp in this movie.  He has a flair for romantic comedy and is actually very funny when juggling his fiancé and a giddy groupie.


The plot leaves something to be desired.  There are no clever plot twists or anything, just The Falcon trying to get the goods on the bad guys.  That’s okay because you’ll be too busy relishing Sanders’ performance to notice the lack of surprises.


Sanders returned the next year in A Date with the Falcon.



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