Ghost Chasers (1951)

GHOST CHASERS (1951)
Article #1326 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-31-2004
Posting Date: 3-30-2005
Directed by William Beaudine
Featuring Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Lloyd Corrigan

When the neighbor of Slip’s mother becomes obsessed with reaching her dead son through the help of a phony medium, Slip decides to expose the racket.

Is it just me, or does this Bowery Boys comedy seem a little classier than usual? Maybe it’s just a little bit earlier than most of their movies, or maybe I just got hold of a really good print, but it just seems slicker, more thought out, less frantic and better paced. It has touches I usually don’t expect from a Bowery Boys film; the ghost that appears at one point breaks the fourth wall and addresses the audience directly, there’s a bit more emotional depth to the story (I like the scenes with Slip and the neighbor woman), and among the boys themselves, the emphasis isn’t entirely on Slip and Sach; Billy Benedict as Whitey is given a central role in the proceedings as well. I don’t know if these touches made a whole lot of difference; it’s still a Bowery Boys movie, and Huntz Hall’s mugging and Leo Gorcey’s malaprops are still the primary focus. Still, I just wanted to say that I noticed those little touches. My favorite scene: Louis Dumbrowsky agrees to a seance to speak to his dead uncle (who owed him money when he died) only to have the spirit ask for a loan of a hundred dollars.

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