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Underworld

Underwoorld, without mentioning Chicago as the scene of the ensuing maching-gun warfare between the crooks and cops, evidently is a page out of Ben Hecht's underworld acquaintance with the Cicero and South Side gun mob.

Cast:
George Bancroft Clive Brook Evelyn Brent Larry Semon Fred Kohler

Underwoorld, without mentioning Chicago as the scene of the ensuing maching-gun warfare between the crooks and cops, evidently is a page out of Ben Hecht’s underworld acquaintance with the Cicero and South Side gun mob.

There’s a wallop right through and yet the film retains romance, clicks not a little on comedy (through the medium of Larry Semon) and even whitewashes itself with a ‘moral’ that banditry cannot successfully defy the law and that the wages of sin are death.

Hecht could have made Underworld a true biography of Cicero with the ‘alky’ gun mob, with a little switching of the motivation, but instead of bootlegging, our hero is a jewelry store sampler. George Bancroft as Bull Weed, a sympathetic crook, explains why Paramount re-signed him by his performance in Underworld. Clive Brook, cast as the regenerated drunkard an Evelyn Brent, as Bancroft’s girl, complete the outstanding trio.

Underworld

Production: Paramount. Director Josef von Sternberg; Producer Hector Turnbull; Screenplay Ben Hecht, Robert N. Lee, George Marion Jr., Charles Furthman; Camera Bert Glennon; Art Director Hans Dreier

Crew: Silent. (B&W) Extract of a review from 1927. Running time: 75 MIN.

With: George Bancroft Clive Brook Evelyn Brent Larry Semon Fred Kohler

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