Donlevy and Tamiroff work off each other excellently here. Real chemistry. A bizarre story, opening with a suicide attempt of all things, but this is Sturges after all so anything goes. A great commentary on our screwed up political system, think Mr. Smith Goes To Wash. with a dose of cynicism. The only thing for me about the film I didn't care for was the ending. Felt too rushed. Otherwise, awesome. 4.5 stars
Few comedies begin with a despairing drunkard's suicide attempt, but that's Sturges for you. Here he turns his scabrous vision on US politics, an unremitting cesspool of graft, demagoguery, and fraud. Donleavy is good as the sleazy bum who works his way to governor and tries to go straight. He winds up disgraced, divorced, a fugitive tending bar in a Third World backwater. In America, honesty is for suckers.
This is a land of great opportunity! As long as you have no ideals and you're willing to rough up the right people. After working on a campaign for 3 months, I watched TGM the day after election day. In some ways it made me long for the days of blatant graft. Sure would have made my job more lucrative! But, alas, today politics attracts jellyfish like me.