Brother Orchid

1940

Action / Comedy / Crime / Drama / Romance

3
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 66%
IMDb Rating 7 10 2548

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Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
March 28, 2021 at 02:34 PM

Director

Cast

Frank Faylen as Parkway Biltmore Desk Clerk
Humphrey Bogart as Jack Buck
Ann Sothern as Flo Addams
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
804.27 MB
956*720
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 27 min
P/S 2 / 1
1.46 GB
1424*1072
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 27 min
P/S 1 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by secondtake 7 / 10

Oddball half gangster half sentimental idealist, Robinson terrific, Bogart barely present

Brother Orchid (1940)

Edward G. Robinson plays first fiddle here, a mob boss jaded with the business and leaving it in Humphrey Bogart's hands while he goes to Europe. For five years. He comes back broke, and he's surprised he isn't boss anymore. Ha. That's just the first twenty minutes. There are more mob doings, and then it takes an odd couple of twists that give the movie its distinction.

"Brother Orchid" is fast, it's classic mobster stuff, and yet it's never hard edged and mean, as if it knows by 1940 the genre is old and people watching it have a bit of of nostalgia for it. (This isn't really true, however, as Cagney's most polished and possibly best gangster movie was White Heat in 1949. By the way, Cagney was originally slated for Robinson's role.) It is a light comedy around the edges, and Ralph Bellamy is the one truly comic character. But Ann Southern as the lead girl plays a lighthearted moll.

The mood here is to entertain. The title is odd from outside the theater but it makes sense after seeing it, and it's this second half of the movie that makes it all a little too starry eyed, even if it's also tongue-in-cheek. But most of all, it's totally enjoyable. Bogart, who appears really for just a couple minutes of screen time total, is restrained and not the classic Bogart just emerging ("The Maltese Falcon" and "High Sierra" are both 1941). But Robinson is in usual top form, subtle, peculiar, convincing, sympathetic. He even delivers some very sentimental lines with such earthy conviction you can believe him. Almost.

Reviewed by blanche-2 7 / 10

A mobster hides out in an unlikely place

Edward G. Robinson becomes "Brother Orchid" in this 1940 film directed by Lloyd Bacon and also starring Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sothern, Ralph Bellamy, and Allen Jenkins. Robinson plays a mobster, Johnny Sarto, who works protection. He quits the business, turning it over to his right hand man, Jack Buck (Bogart) and spends five years touring the world in search of class. He comes back home broke from bad investments (the Borgia's bed was made in Grand Rapids) and wants back in.

Jack Buck, however, doesn't want to give up his position. When Johnny's airhead girlfriend Flo (Sothern) speaks with Jack about reconciling with Johnny, she reminds him that Johnny witnessed Jack murder someone. Jack pretends to go along with the reconciliation, but in reality, he plans on killing Johnny. Johnny escapes the hit men and, believing Flo set him up, realizes he has no one to turn to. He passes out in front of a monastery and winds up donning the monastic robe and raising flowers.

Very funny and warm film with wonderful performances. Robinson always played comedy very seriously, making his sinister gangster seem even funnier here. Beautiful Ann Sothern is great as the ditsy girlfriend who loves Johnny but can't get a commitment out of him. Bogart is still portraying crooks at this point, and he does an excellent job as the dangerous Johnny Buck. Donald Woods and Cecil Kellaway are two of the monks Johnny encounters.

Director Bacon did a lot of gangster films at Warners, and he really knew how to pace them.

Very enjoyable.

Reviewed by classicsoncall 8 / 10

"From now on, I'm going after the two things I've always wanted most, good taste and refinement."

Defying classification, "Brother Orchid" contains elements of film noir, gangster movies, and comedy, and showcases Edward G. Robinson as a mobster who quits the rackets because his tastes have outgrown them. It's a premise that walks a tightrope throughout the picture, and has Little John Sarto (Robinson) alternately swaying between his gangster life and a dreamy vision that may or may not be fulfilled.

Although an entertaining enough film, I had difficulty in accepting Sarto's all or nothing approach to each of his mid stream course corrections. At the outset, when turning over the gang to his second in command Jack Buck (Humphrey Bogart), Sarto convincingly claims it's for good. But to leave his girlfriend Flo Addams (Ann Sothern) behind as he squanders his fortune in the capitals of Europe seems a bit overboard; for Flo to keep the romance alive even as she rises from hat check girl to owning the Crescent Club is even more of a stretch. Especially when a reasonably handsome and urbane suitor like Clarence Fletcher (Ralph Bellamy) comes along. Fletcher is charming without being pushy and seems more than a romantic match for Flo, considering her treatment by the almost repulsive behavior of Johnny.

What does bring life to the film is the snappy, staccato one liners delivered by Sarto, often so glib that this viewer caught the full nuance well into the next scene. Then you have the colorful names of Sarto's cohorts - Mugsy, Philadelphia, Crack and Willie the Knife. Willie in particular is well portrayed by essential character actor Allen Jenkins, one of the few mugs who stayed loyal to Little John, even as he faked his way into a mental asylum during Johnny's hiatus.

When it appears that Flo sets up Johnny to be ambushed by Jack Buck, Johnny makes his getaway to a reclusive Floracian Monastery, where the brothers of the order make their living growing and selling flowers to help beautify the world. Brother Superior is portrayed by affable Donald Crisp in a calm and self assured manner. Entranced by the serene way of life of the brothers, Johnny makes it his own, and takes for his name a personal preference - Brother Orchid. When the brothers' way of life is threatened by their inability to pay tribute to Buck's protective association, Little John is back to his gangster ways to set things right, but this time forming a gang of Clarence Fletcher's Western buddies who have hit town to attend Fletcher's marriage to Flo!

Robinson and Bogart made a total of five films together, with Robinson getting top billing in all but 1948's "Key Largo". The others include "Bullets or Ballots" (1936), "Kid Galahad" (1937), and "The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse" (1938). "Brother Orchid" was the only film in which Ann Sothern appeared with either Bogey or Robinson. For fans of any of these stars, or of classic films of the 1930's and 40's, all of the films mentioned are recommended.

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