Buckley is an unethical reporter who manipulates the news for his own benefit as much as he reports it. When he is in Paris to get a medal for being rescued from his alleged kidnappers, he ...
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Buckley is an unethical reporter who manipulates the news for his own benefit as much as he reports it. When he is in Paris to get a medal for being rescued from his alleged kidnappers, he finds that his boss, Stevens, at the Chicago Globe is going with his old gal Dolly. When Stevens learns that Dolly is staying with Buckley in Moscow, he fires Buckley. To get his job back, Buckley and Lefty stage a great news story about the shooting of the last Romanoff, but the plan backfires and they are now in line to be shot by the Commissar.Written by
Tony Fontana <email@example.com>
Lee Tracy plays a typical '30s reporter in "Clear All Wires" from 1933.
What's a typical '30s reporter? Fast-talking, glib, manipulative, will do anything to get a story -- and who better to play him in his MGM debut than Lee Tracy?
In "Clear All Wires," Tracy's character, Buckley Joyce Thomas, isn't averse to making the news either, or embellishing it. According to him, he's dying of thirst in the desert at one point when in fact, he's being treated like a king.
When he returns to Chicago, he runs into his publisher's girlfriend, Dolly (Una Merkel) - she calls her benefactor "Daddy" -- and, with his boss out of the room, Buckley makes plans to meet her that evening. His publisher isn't an idiot. Buckley is then dispensed to Moscow immediately.
There, he takes over another reporter's suite (and later his identity) and, with his assistant (James Gleason) tries to get some major interviews.
Then Dolly shows up, and the publisher fires him for conduct unbecoming. Desperate, he tries to marry a fellow reporter, Kate (Benita Hume) who is insulted because she really does love him. Now he really has to do something to keep his job.
It's a very fast film probably trying to be madcap, but it's a little too talky for that, having been a play starring Thomas Mitchell. But Lee Tracy is excellent. Always theatrical in his approach, this was his kind of role.
This material has a place in Broadway history. It was made into a musical, "Leave it to Me," which was Mary Martin's debut in the Una Merkel role. And what did she sing? "My Heart Belongs to Daddy."
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