Any Number Can Play Reviews

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jjnxn
Super Reviewer
½ May 24, 2013
One of the King's indifferent postwar vehicles isn't terrible but nothing special at least he has a strong leading lady in Alexis Smith.
July 14, 2010
Any Number Can Play (1949)

Gambling movies are a whole genre of their own with a big fan base. We all have our favorite game of chance (mine is craps) and we love to see people playing it.

I believe that this was Clark Gable's last movie under contract with MGM, and although it wasn't a big-budget, wide screen, technicolor, action picture, it was more of an interesting studio drama written by Richard Brooks, from a novel by Edward Harris Heth and directed by Mervyn LeRoy. It's very much worth taking a look at.

Charley Kyng (Gable) is living his dream. He's a gambler who runs a small town casino. He won the little gambling house in a card game from Ben Snelerr (Lewis Stone) who is now down on his luck, like many of the other characters Charley meets at the casino. There's some great character actors and actresses in this movie.

Now Charley's getting some bad news from Dr. Palmer (Leon Ames) that he has a heart condition from stress and needs to seriously consider quitting and take it easy from now on.

Charley's wife, Lon (Alexis Smith) and teenaged son, Paul (Darryl Hickman) don't like Charley's business. Even though, they're well off and live in a big house, they get embarrassed by the town gossips and the hard luck stories they get from their friends. In fact, Paul (sort of) gets into a fight at his prom over his dad's casino and lands in the city jail.

This is a great Father's day movie. When Paul tells his Dad that he should give his customers back their money, instead of getting mad, Charley tells him that this is good, that he wants to change the world, when he grows up and changes things that he'll try to live by those rules, but until then, he has to work with the rules that he's got.
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