“Nicely done with flavorsome atmosphere” "Highly entertaining, well made mystery” “What a hoot!” (IMDB reviews quotes).
This second of two Colombia Thatcher Colt mysteries comes with a hefty dose of ‘30s racism. There is big trouble in a circus that has as one of its main attractions a large group of black cannibals. (yikes!) Adolph Menjou heads a strong cast that includes Donald Cook and Dwight Frye. The mystery is well plotted and well mounted with excellent production values. So if you can stomach blatant racism give it a look. IMDB rating 6.2.
Directed by Roy William Neill.
Released in 1933
AKA “The Murder of the Circus Queen”
TRIVIA: A third Thatcher Colt mystery (“The Panther’s Claw”) was produced by PRC in 1942. It’s available here at the Archive.
August 17, 2019 Subject:
Murder Mystery Complicated by Racial Prejudices.
The film presents a good murder mystery unfortunately containing some offensive racial attitudes - that were typical of the day - that doesn't excuse them, but it places them in context, for whatever that is worth. The film opens with Adolphe Menjou (Police Commissioner Thatcher Colt) whistling "Turkey in the Straw" with his breath manipolating a jointed stick figure doll of a black minstrel show type dancer. He is not necessarily racist, but he does buy into the possibility that the missing "cannibal" in a circus troupe ate their missing member. And, the savage "cannibal" are promoted by a barker as being "man-eaters." There is also a segment of black workers driving a stake, singing about returning to Alabama - reminiscent of slave portrayals in other films.These segments do not take up that much screen time and the black men are not portrayed as wild men and actually provide music for a trapeze act. On the other hand they can only communicate with the man they are friends with, who recruited them, the murder suspect. So, when their long flutes - possibly blow pipes - are all pointed towards a trapeze artist during her act, the possibility of their "cannibalistic" practices again arises.
If you can get past these instances of racism, which don't really affect the action in the film, it is very enjoyable. Menjou is adequate as a Police Commissioner, but no more. The real stars are Greta Nissen (Josie La Tour), Donald Cook (The Great Sebastian) and the inimitable David Frye (Flandrin). Harry Homan (Jim Dugan) provides just enough comic relief. The other actors are okay. And nice circus footage.
August 3, 2019 Subject:
Sane people are racialists
Amarar, ... seeing a child of his own, two years old, at hand, when the oracle announced the decree, snatched the infant from his mother's arms, threw it into a rice mortar, and, with a pestle, mashed it to death.... [W]hen the mysterious oracle declared that the chief "could not conquer till he returned once more to his mother's womb" ... Amarar committed the blackest of incests.... nationalvanguard.org/2014/12/savage-africa-part-1/
In the United States in 2005, 37,460 white females were sexually assaulted or raped by a black man, while between zero and ten black females were sexually assaulted or raped by a white man. What this means is that every day in the United States, over one hundred white women are raped or sexually assaulted by a black man. http://archive.frontpagemag.com/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=26368
"Dr. King" witnessed—and encouraged—the rape of one of his female followers, and laughed while the rape was taking place in his presence.
"When David Garrow, whose 1986 biography of King received international acclaim, first tried to publish his new findings, he was turned down by every great liberal publication, including the Washington Post and Atlantic magazine, both of which he has written for in the past." — Kevin Alfred Strom
Martin Luther King's widow ... ran away from the Black community because Black criminals were too much of a threat to her safety, and she had to seek safety in a neighborhood where the majority race was White.... Isn't it incredible that Black people who are too dangerous to live around Mrs. Martin Luther King ... are considered safe enough that White children can be thrown into classrooms with them. — Don Advo (Stormfront podcast; 2017-01-16, hour 2.) archive.org/download/DonBlackOnTheRenseNetwork6/Db-0116172.mp3
In Stockholm ... 20 Muslim men ... began to assault the children, ripping their swimsuits off and beating the boys when they tried to stop the assault.... [T]he men cornered one of the [11-year-old] girls in a grotto in the bathhouse and gang raped her. The police refused to press any charges. http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=807_1369627137