Lucky Jordan (1942)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Propaganda Film, War Drama  |   Release Date - Nov 16, 1942 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 84 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Review by Craig Butler

Alan Ladd fans are in for a field day with Lucky Jordan, which shows the star off to very good advantage. The first film to give the then up-and-coming Ladd top billing, Lucky is an entertaining, sprightly little gangster comedy that perks along merrily, despite a third act detour into wartime propaganda that may strike modern viewers as a bit much. It's not really the in-your-face patriotism that may be problematic so much as it is the unrealistic about-face that it inspires in Ladd's character. Oh, we're expecting him to reform, all right; it's just that we want a smoother, more believable transformation. Still, this is a small price to pay for a flick that gives Ladd a chance to show his flair for comedy, and gives him some choice one-liners and rejoinders to do so. (Some of the lines make one wonder whether the censors were really paying attention, such as Ladd's refusing to go to his secretary's flat with the comment that "doesn't like crowds.") As the star's love interest, Helen Walker is energetic and spunky but not especially impressive; much better are Sheldon Leonard and Mabel Paige.