It Could Happen to You (1937)

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It Could Happen to You is one of those captivating "little" pictures whose reputation is built up via word of mouth. Alan Baxter and Owen Davis Jr. star as Bob and Fred, the sons of immigrant Pa Barrett (Al Shean). Fred is a dutiful offspring, but Bob, an adoptee, is a no-good, stealing money from the old man to further his ambitions. When Pa Barrett confronts Bob with this discovery, the young man accidentally kills his stepfather. As fate would have it, Fred has become a lawyer, and it is he who takes on the job of defending Bob in court. Fred wins an acquittal, but Bob learns to his chagrin that he will never be able to escape the "judge and jury" of his own conscience. The script for It Could Happen to You was co-written by Nathaniel West, later the author of the trenchant anti-Hollywood novel Day of the Locust.

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