A Ticket in Tatts

A Ticket In Tatts (Frank W. Thring, 1934) Efftee Film Productions, wr. George Wallace, John P. McLeod, dp Arthur Higgins; George Wallace, Frank Harvey, Campbell Copelin; 88 min.

I feel sorry for people who were alive in Australia around 1930, because they not only had to watch George Wallace but also think he was good, as there was a limited range of other performers to compare him to. So they had to watch A Ticket in Tatts for example. The plot concerns fixing the Melbourne Cup; but there's a lot in the movie which has nothing to do with the plot. George works in a grocery store in the opening sequence, and there's a lot of really silly business with butter and flour and displays falling over. Later there's a scene in a night club, which provides an excuse for a troupe of dancing girls to do a couple of turns, and some singer, and also George himself doing a 'comic' song and tap-dancing, and pratfalls. That's one thing that Wallace did unequivocally well: falling over.

Thring made more effort than usual to take the action away from the studio: location scenes were shot on a stud farm near Melbourne, at the Flemington racecourse, and in the grounds of a palatial Melbourne villa. Frequently, however, Thring interrupted the story with stage-bound vaudeville acts, including a long opening sketch in which George destroys a grocery display while trying to serve customers in a store, and some song and ballet items in a cabaret where George poses as a singing waiter in order to spy on the gangsters. Pike & Cooper: 164.


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