It was nail biting stuff and was one of the top entries in the darkly noir Whistler series.
Almost 30 years previously Douglas Fairbanks had played it for laughs!! He is Augy Holliday a temperamental artist who can "draw everything except a salary"!! For once Fairbanks is not wealthy but he is able to poke fun at rent collectors - even poverty, as all he can do is to paint a picture of a steak dinner that his hungry dogs devour!!
He falls in love with Gladys sweet Jewel Carmena girl walking in the park who his friend Harry seems to know. But poor Augy is tongue tied with Gladys and can only rehearse with her friend all the endearments he can't say to Gladys!!
Of course she overhears their conversation and turns to the man her mother has picked out for her!!
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The laughs start to come when Doug decides to end it all - first he decides to gas himself but an unpaid bill means the gas has already been turned off. He then makes the acquaintance of "Automatic Joe" - the hit-man who never misses. George Beranger gets just as many laughs as Doug and gleefully rolls out the many ways of death flirt chase dating his disposal.
But professional killers also have sick mothers and Joe now promises to go straight! In the meantime Augy's luck has changed - his painting has been found, a friend has lent him money, his stepmother has died leaving him a millionaire and Gladys now knows all and wants to make amends. Augy is now scared witless that Joe is still on his war path - he is - on the Salvation Army warpath!!
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Augy goes to the police and they assign him "the Correspondence School Detective" a lamebrain who is forever under the police's feet. Very funny in parts but not consistent and could have used more of what made "Wild and Woolly" so hilarious.
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Sign in to vote. Although painter Augy does not make a penny, he does not look depressed at all and when he falls in love with the beautiful and rich Gladys he's in seventh heaven. But when Glady's seeks consolation with another man, Augy's heart is broken and does not want to live anymore.
After a failed suicide attempt, he hires a contract killer to do him in. From that moment on, it becomes a super fun and comic movie. Fairbanks shows what he's best in and does a lot of stunt work.
The Surprise has the same theme. This film is based on a story of Belcampo, which was filmed for Belgian television in But this is not the only movie with that same theme. Inthe Czechs made 'Shut up and shoot me'.
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In the Finns came with the black comedy; 'I hired a contract killer'. The French also made their own version with 'Up to his ears' in But who thinks that 'Flirting with Fate' was the first in is deceived. It may be the flirt chase dating movie with this plot, but the credits for this original story should flirt chase dating to Jules Verne with his book 'Tribulations of a Chinaman in China', dating back to mtn privat Back to Flirting with Fate.
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Although Douglas Fairbanks plays the stars of heaven, leading lady, Jewel Carmen, is a bit disappointing. She's just a beautiful face and she hasn't really got charisma. Her friend Phyllis, played by Dorothy Haydel, has a minor role, but clearly has more charisma. In addition, George Beranger, who plays Automatic Joe, deserves a mention. He plays his role as a contract killer excellent. But apart from the slow start and the flat leading lady this is a very nice movie.