Similar Images #10

Check and Double Check
(Melville W. Brown; 1930)

The French Connection
(William Friedkin; 1971)


Joe Thompson said...

"Check and Double Check" featured radio's Amos 'n Andy. Freeman Gosden (driving) was Amos and Charles Correll was Andy. I saw it once and it was a strange experience. Duke Ellington and his Orchestra were good.

Joe Thompson ;0)

Flickhead said...

What's particularly treacherous on the streets of Friedkin's Manhattan are all those innocent young women pushing baby carriages. Such as the one toward the beginning of Popeye’s chase and the one toward the end. Almost like a running gag. Although I’m sure Billy took it all quite seriously.

swac said...

I found it on a public domain triple-disc comedy DVD that also included a decent looking copy of Wheeler & Woolsey's Half Shot at Sunrise and Clark & McCullough's RKO short Odor in the Court, which I'd been searching for for ages. The rest was the usual Africa Screams, The Gorilla and that same batch of Three Stooges shorts, but it was worth the $5 for those first two films.

Check and Double Check, not so much, although as you say, the Duke Ellington scenes are fabulous.

Max Allan Collins said...

CHECK AND DOUBLE CHECK is a fairly rare excursion into blackface for Correll and Gosden, the Amos 'n' Andy creators. The radio show in that era was a comic soap opera, daily, and not yet the familiar, zany, weekly sitcom of the '40s that became the great if much maligned TV show of the early '50s. The black TV cast was brilliant, particularly Tim Moore, who may have been the funniest comic actor of 'em all. The TV shows (and the '40s radio ones) were often the work of Connelly and Mosher, who did the also great LEAVE IT TO BEAVER and the very entertaining THE MUNSTERS.

Christopher said...

Check and Double Check was availible years ago on film in super 8mm and 16mm when I was collecting films in the 70s..I never got it ..but i liked collecting the Amos n Andy tv shows of the 50s..

Tommy O'C said...

What's particularly treacherous on the streets of Friedkin's Manhattan are all those innocent young women pushing baby carriages.The chase scene was filmed in Brooklyn, not Manhattan, under what was then the "B" line ("N" line cars were used because they were cleaner), except for one brief shot in Ridgewood, Queens, under Myrtle Avenue's "M" line.

The NYPD tactical squad closed down blocks at a stretch and manipulated traffic signals to accommodate the chase.

The most dangerous part was during the last day of filming, when Friedkin's chase permit was about to expire. He still didn't have the type of exciting footage he wanted. So he got in a chase car with a camera operator and stunt driver Bill Hickman. (The legendary Hickman played the ill-fated FBI agent Muldrake and also drove/appeared in the chase scenes from "Bullitt" and, later, "The Seven Ups,"; he had also taught James Dean to race and followed Dean in a station wagon with photographer Sanford Roth, the day of his fatal crash; Dean actually died in Hickman's arms at the crash site.)

Hickman, Friedkin, and the camera operator sped through the congested streets of Brooklyn at speeds of 90 MPH. This is when there were drivers on the street who didn't know they were in a movie. It also produced some of the most tense shots in the chase sequence.

There were some real crashes. One, with a parked car, at the corner of Stillwell Avenue and 86th, was kept in the movie. But the woman with the baby carriage was put in to show Doyle swerving to avoid her.

swac said...

I definitely remember getting a strong feeling of deja vu when I first visited Brooklyn in the early '80s.