The Law of Contact

Dixie Jamboree (August 15, , 1944)

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Frances Langford and Louise Beavers

Released on August 15, 1944: (running time 69 minutes) The last show boat on the Mississippi River has a medicine man captain that is mistaken for an infamous bootlegger and is chased by the mob.

Produced by Jack Schwarz

Directed by Christy Cabanne

The Actors: Frances Langford (Susan Jackson), Guy Kibbee (Captain Jackson of the 'Ellabella' Showboat), Charles Butterworth (the professor), Fifi D'Orsay (Yvette), Lyle Talbot (Anthony 'Tony' Sardell), Frank Jenks (Jack 'Curly' Berger), Almira Sessions (Mrs. Ellabella Jackson, Susan's Aunt), Joe Devlin (Police Sergeant), Louise Beavers (Opal), Ben Carter (Sam the deckhand and Ben Carter, Choir Leader), Gloria Jetter (Azella, Opal's daughter), Ward Shattuck (Henry Doakes), Ethel Shattuck (Mrs. Henry Doakes), Anthony Warde ('Double', a phony American Indian), Anthony Cruz ('Nothing', a phony American Indian), Eddie Kane (J.M. Thornton), Emmett Lynn (Cafe Janitor), Ralph Peters (Policeman at the cafe).


The Law of Contact

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Director Christy Cabanne successfully adds a light musical comedy to her impressive list of motion picture accomplishments. Veteran character actor Guy Kibbee is old Captain Jackson of the last show boat on the Mississippi River, and he sells bottles of medicine made from a secret formula that is lost, hidden somewhere on the show boat. Lyle Talbot is gangster Anthony that needs to get out of town fast, because the heat is on. Captain Jackson is selling bottles of water from the boat's water tank as 'medicine,' because he cannot find the formula for the real stuff. When Anthony tastes some of the 'Pepto Vintage Water,' he discovers that it is some of the finest whiskey he ever tasted. He tries to buy the showboat from the Captain because he believes that there are thousands of gallons left in the water tank that are worth a fortune, but the Captain refuses. Meanwhile, the Captain's niece Susan (Frances Langford) is the main attraction in the show, and we quickly discover that fate will match her up with a new young man that plays the trumpet like a pro any time she is around, because he gets an inspriational 'tickle' when he is in her presence.

Even though there isn't a plot that will keep you on the edge of your seat, pop a big bowl of popcorn and enjoy the music of Frances Langford, and some great music from a group of African Americans, including a darling little girl that plays the daughter of veteran character actor Louise Beavers. If you think you remember Lyle Talbot from television as well as from the movies, you might be thinking of his many appearances on The Advenures of Ozzie and Harriet as neighbor Joe Randolph.