A Dispatch from Reuter's (1940)

Genres - Drama, Historical Film  |   Sub-Genres - Biopic [feature], Docudrama  |   Release Date - Oct 19, 1940 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 89 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

As part of his new contract with Warner Bros., Edward G. Robinson agreed to appear in the gangster comedy Brother Orchid on the condition that the studio permit him to play the leading role in the lavish biopic A Dispatch from Reuters. Robinson is cast as Baron Paul Julius Reiter, who in 1833 inaugurates a "pigeon post" messenger service which is soon rendered obsolete by the invention of the telegraph. Eventually adapting to the new communications process, Reuters is able to extends his links to the major capitals of Europe, achieving success by scooping his competition with a transcription of a speech by Louis Napoleon. By 1858, Reuters has expanded his operation to the English-speaking countries, seriously over-extending himself financially. Ultimately, Reuters is rescued from bankruptcy in 1865 when he broadcasts on a worldwide basis the news of President Lincoln's assassination-even before the American ambassador in England has been informed of the tragedy. Throughout the highs and lows of his career, Reuters is encouraged by his loyal and loving wife Ida (Edna Best), who continually reminds him that he is a communicator and not a grandstander. Though not as entertaining and satisfying as Robinson's previous biographical film Dr. Ehrlich's Magic Bullet, A Dispatch from Reuters' benefits immeasurably from the almost terrifying expertise of the Warners production staff and its stellar supporting cast (Eddie Albert, Gene Lockhart, Nigel Bruce, Otto Kruger et. al.)



newspaper, publisher, ambassador [political], America, aristocracy, assassination, bank-personnel, carrier-pigeon, city, employment, financier, gathering, history, love, marriage, news, office, press, reputation, secrets, service, speech, speed, telegram, wife