Film (1954; vt McCluskey Strikes a Blow [original script title]). Panoramic Productions/20th Century Fox Film Corporation. Produced by Leonard Goldstein. Directed by Oscar Rudolph. Written by Lenny Bruce and Jack Henley from a story by George W George and George F Slavin. Cast includes John Agar, Spring Byington, Charles Coburn, Anne Francis, Emory Parnell and George "Foghorn" Winslow. 79 minutes. Black and white.
Young Timmy (Winslow) has obtained a Ray Gun – possibly from his actual father, who it is hinted may be an Alien – whose Ray can force people to tell the truth. Timmy is living in an orphanage that is currently in danger of being foreclosed upon by crooked politician Big Bill Watkins (Parnell). Tom Baxter (Agar) is initially a henchman for Watkins, but sees the error of his ways thanks to the ray gun, and soon falls for June Brown (Francis), niece of Justice of the Peace Amelia Brown (Byington). Major Johnson (Coburn) is also on hand for the mayhem caused by Timmy's ray gun. All ends happily.
An unlikely screen credit for savage alternative comedian Lenny Bruce (1925-1966), this is one of the very few US sf films of the 1950s actually intended for children. Others include Tobor the Great (1954) and The Invisible Boy (1957). [GFi]
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