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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

A still from Way Back Home (1931)

Way Back Home

1931 | United States | 81 min
aka:
  • Other People's Business
  • Watched on Wed Apr 14, 2021 via DVD (2018 | Warner Bros.)
    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Starts rough, with an inert, talky scene where Phillips Lord spins a folksy yarn about his finances. Things improve as the script settles into a rural melodrama involving a pair of young lovers looking to elope and the return of an adopted boy’s brutish biological father. Bette Davis plays one of the young lovers in her then biggest part to date. She’s fine, if unremarkable in the role.

    Warner Brothers developed the picture as a showcase for Lord’s popular radio personality. He’d be a fine character actor ala Gabby Hayes or Walter Brennan, but lacks the presence to carry the picture.

    Your mileage may vary. I found the film well-produced but underwhelming. The singing numbers proved tedious instead of inspirational. The improbable high-speed buggy chase offered the lone highlight. Notice the skidding turns. Those buggies were moving. Just disregard the gaffe when a passenger jumps and lands on the buggy’s opposite side.

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