MovieChat Forums > Chain Lightning (1950) Discussion > Funny, because it has every cliche!

Funny, because it has every cliche!

Doesn't miss any of them. At first I felt like I was seeing "Casablanca Goes Sonic Boom", you know, a formula flick. I mean, despite what one reviewer said, this was a Bogart vehicle, no question.

Older guy, younger girl, lot's of booze, bravado, and 'noble reasons' why the 50 year old guy and the 22 year old girl aren't together, even though it's clear they are a 'team'.

Well, let's just suffice to say by about a third of the way through I was giggling at some of the dialog. By 2/3's down, I was watching a comedy, and by the end, it may as well have been "Duck Soup". A parody of 40's romances, combat flicks, and the Bogart persona.

Man, what hackneyed writing. And despite what yet another reviewer said, Bogie was a pro. He was playing this straight, they all are, it's part of what makes it so darned funny. I didn't see any 'inside joke' stuff from him, he played it as straight as he played Rick, or many of his other 40's characters.

Still glad I saw it, although this one won't wind up in the Library Of Congress for sure.


"Chain Lightning" has its share of cliches, no doubt about it. And it has a very amble share. But I still like this film and do watch it from time to time. Call it one of my guilty pleasures, if you like.

The film is worth watching for its fine actors if nothing else. "Chain Lightning" also qualifies, sort of, as the second of Bogart's two movies that might be called science fiction. The other, of course, is "The Return of Doctor-X." Now, that one is really a hoot. Bogart is reported to have loathed the movie, but he went along with the gag since he was a good soldier in Jack Warner's little army. This is also one of my guilty pleasures.


Of course, today's movies are totally cliche free, it has to be said! I mean, no booze, gratuitous sex, drugs, older guy younger girl (or older woman, younger guy), etc. And since practically no one in Hollywood can come up with an original movie idea, maybe they are just rehashing these hackneyed written movies of earlier years. As for the noble reason they weren't together, perhaps if more couples worried about finances before they got married, they wouldn't end up living with their parents. My only quibble with this movie, outside of the aircraft, was that he didn't have to return to the states after his 25th mission. But then, that would have ruined the story line.


In 1943 the number of comabat missions for a heavy bomber crew that would constitute a tour of duty was set at 25. Victor's crew was to be sent home for a war bond tour - a la the crew of the "Memphis Belle". In 1944 the number of required missions was raised to 30, then later that year to 35 as the loss rates per mission declined - especially with the introduction of the North American P-51D Mustang that could accompany the bombers all the way to the target and back.