skip navigation
Too Hot to Handle

Too Hot to Handle(1938)

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here

Remind Me

TCMDb Archive MaterialsView all archives (0)

DVDs from TCM Shop

Too Hot to Handle Rival newsreel photographers... MORE > $14.36 Regularly $17.99 Buy Now


powered by AFI

DVDs from TCM Shop

Too Hot to Handle Rival newsreel photographers... MORE > $14.36
Regularly $17.99
buy now

Union Newsreel journalist Chris Hunter is known for his dirty tricks. When Shanghai doesn't provide enough hot material on the Sino-Japanese War, he and his assistant Joselito send home bogus footage of a bombing raid that enrages his Atlas Newsreel rival Bill Dennis. In retaliation, Bill decides to stage a "mercy flight" to bring cholera serum to China. The night the plane arrives Chris sneaks onto the field in an ambulance and photographs the incident, which he thinks is genuine, but the ambulance gets in the way of the plane, causing it to crash. After Chris saves flier Alma Harding, she reveals that it is all a gag while the camera is still rolling. Later, to impress Alma, a childhood friend of Bill's, Chris pretends to destroy the film by exposing it to an X-ray. He also tricks her into joining him in New York to work for his boss, Gabby MacArthur. Unknown to him, Bill has clipped out the incriminating footage from Chris's film and sent everything back to his boss, Pearly Todd. Although Chris loses credit for the film stolen by Bill, he and Alma create a sensation in New York by flying to a sinking ship and photographing the disaster at close range. Still angered at Chris, Bill threatens to use some of the Shanghai footage against him unless he shares the new film with him. Chris convinces Gabby to cooperate, but Gabby later cancels the deal with Pearly. At a preview screening of the disaster film, Pearly rolls the uncut Shanghai footage, causing everyone to think Alma is a fraud. Now Alma can't raise money to search for her missing explorer brother Harry, so Chris and Bill secretly finance her expedition to the Amazon and through deception, Joselito gets Gabby to re-hire Chris and send him to South America. When Bill learns where Chris is going, he flies there, arriving before Chris. On the outskirts of the jungle, a native gives Alma Harry's watch and asks her to take him in her plane to Harry. Chris tries to convince Alma not to go because the man is a member of a voodoo tribe, but she and Bill fly off the next morning. While they fly, Chris, Joselito and the native canoe to the village, the native escapes after a scuffle and is shot by Joselito. When Chris and Joselito arrive at the village, they rig a projector to show some test film in the trees, thus tricking the natives into thinking that Chris is a white god. When Alma approaches, they dress as witch doctors and Chris offers Harry as Joselito secretly photographs them. Just then the native wounded by Joselito arrives and exposes him and Chris. They try to escape in Alma's plane, but, thinking that they are hostile natives, Bill forces them off the plane and they have to paddle back. Upon Alma and Bill's arrival in New York, they are greeted by photos of Harry's rescue. Alma then goes to Chris, who is photographing a police shootout. Though she's slightly wounded, she says she might be able to make a man of him.