Big Jim McLain Reviews

  • Sep 05, 2015

    Hunting Communists in Hawaii. A fifties era McCarthyism propaganda film. Joe must have loved it. I love John Wayne, but this film leaves a lot to be desired. This film seeks to glorify the Joe McCarty era paranoia and propaganda. The Americans who sought to discredit those who may have had left leaning ideas and Communist Conspirators attempting to undermine the country. Blacklisting and the suppression of Freedom of Speech and the right to self expression or thought was heroic. And John Wayne plays one of those "Heroes". The only thing interesting about this film is the glimpse into that era.

    Hunting Communists in Hawaii. A fifties era McCarthyism propaganda film. Joe must have loved it. I love John Wayne, but this film leaves a lot to be desired. This film seeks to glorify the Joe McCarty era paranoia and propaganda. The Americans who sought to discredit those who may have had left leaning ideas and Communist Conspirators attempting to undermine the country. Blacklisting and the suppression of Freedom of Speech and the right to self expression or thought was heroic. And John Wayne plays one of those "Heroes". The only thing interesting about this film is the glimpse into that era.

  • Jul 21, 2015

    During the times of Communism

    During the times of Communism

  • Aug 01, 2013

    Very silly and dated story of John Wayne as a U.S. House Un-American Activities Committee investigator working to ferret out dirty commies in 1950s Hawaii. The film is a terrible piece of right-wing propaganda (even going as far as to infer commie connection to Pearl Harbor ala Iraq and 9/11), but I have to say that I loved seeing all the location work around old Honolulu, which made the film quite enjoyable. I also always liked Nancy Olson, who typically played girl-next-door types, get to do something a bit more glamorous. And it's interesting to note that Olson, a liberal democrat, hated the script but figured she couldn't pass up a chance to work six-weeks in Hawaii and with John Wayne. If you can tolerate the right-wing McCarthy communist witch-hunt nonsense and the dragnet style of storytelling, it's possibly watchable and a **1/2 film. If you're a fan of Hawaii, give it an extra half a star.

    Very silly and dated story of John Wayne as a U.S. House Un-American Activities Committee investigator working to ferret out dirty commies in 1950s Hawaii. The film is a terrible piece of right-wing propaganda (even going as far as to infer commie connection to Pearl Harbor ala Iraq and 9/11), but I have to say that I loved seeing all the location work around old Honolulu, which made the film quite enjoyable. I also always liked Nancy Olson, who typically played girl-next-door types, get to do something a bit more glamorous. And it's interesting to note that Olson, a liberal democrat, hated the script but figured she couldn't pass up a chance to work six-weeks in Hawaii and with John Wayne. If you can tolerate the right-wing McCarthy communist witch-hunt nonsense and the dragnet style of storytelling, it's possibly watchable and a **1/2 film. If you're a fan of Hawaii, give it an extra half a star.

  • Nov 24, 2012

    John Wayne, as an agent for the House UnAmerican Activities Committee, fights a Commie cell headed by Alan Napier (Alfred of TV's "Batman") and finds love in Hawaii in 1952. Worth watching just to learn that Jame Arness dwarfed John Wayne and for Madam Soo Yong as a penitent ex-Communist nurse serving in a leper colony in order "atone for my crimes against humanity." Worse propaganda-laden drivel than it sounds, actually.

    John Wayne, as an agent for the House UnAmerican Activities Committee, fights a Commie cell headed by Alan Napier (Alfred of TV's "Batman") and finds love in Hawaii in 1952. Worth watching just to learn that Jame Arness dwarfed John Wayne and for Madam Soo Yong as a penitent ex-Communist nurse serving in a leper colony in order "atone for my crimes against humanity." Worse propaganda-laden drivel than it sounds, actually.

  • Jul 03, 2011

    Unique film in that it is not a John Wayne western, but a detective story. Severely dated, but great for Duke fans.

    Unique film in that it is not a John Wayne western, but a detective story. Severely dated, but great for Duke fans.

  • Jun 25, 2011

    John Wayne's worst and dumbest movie. Complete Right-Wing camp and almost as silly as Red Dawn in its cold war paranoia.

    John Wayne's worst and dumbest movie. Complete Right-Wing camp and almost as silly as Red Dawn in its cold war paranoia.

  • Apr 17, 2011

    Interesting dinosaur showcases Wayne as a heroic HUAC investigator, tracking down Commie agents in Hawaii. Dubious politics aside, the film wants have it both ways by trying to be a comedy-romance as Wayne falls in love (and immediately marries!) plucky Nancy Olson, and a straight-up two-fisted actioner as he avenges the death of partner James Arness. Unintentional laughs abound as Duke hypes up the Red Menace. Fascinating time capsule of a paranoid era.

    Interesting dinosaur showcases Wayne as a heroic HUAC investigator, tracking down Commie agents in Hawaii. Dubious politics aside, the film wants have it both ways by trying to be a comedy-romance as Wayne falls in love (and immediately marries!) plucky Nancy Olson, and a straight-up two-fisted actioner as he avenges the death of partner James Arness. Unintentional laughs abound as Duke hypes up the Red Menace. Fascinating time capsule of a paranoid era.

  • Apr 02, 2011

    A passable film. The plot is dated and corny and it plods along not much better than a low grade b-movie, but John Wayne's natural charisma elevates it to a mildly enjoyable level.

    A passable film. The plot is dated and corny and it plods along not much better than a low grade b-movie, but John Wayne's natural charisma elevates it to a mildly enjoyable level.

  • Jan 14, 2011

    Love John Wayne movies.

    Love John Wayne movies.

  • Jan 05, 2011

    This is anti-pinko filmmaking at it's finest. The Duke plays a real American looking to smite commies in the paradise that is our Pacific Gem. The only real trouble I found with this film was that he should have headed right to Hollywood to cull the "Angry Pink Menace" that had obviously moved to take root there. Anyways I digress, the whipping Wayne puts on the Commies here is staggering in scope, I would highly recommend this movie to, not only Wayne Fans... but all people who are in "the know" as to what is happening today... and what dude with the same initials as the title character had it right the whole time.

    This is anti-pinko filmmaking at it's finest. The Duke plays a real American looking to smite commies in the paradise that is our Pacific Gem. The only real trouble I found with this film was that he should have headed right to Hollywood to cull the "Angry Pink Menace" that had obviously moved to take root there. Anyways I digress, the whipping Wayne puts on the Commies here is staggering in scope, I would highly recommend this movie to, not only Wayne Fans... but all people who are in "the know" as to what is happening today... and what dude with the same initials as the title character had it right the whole time.