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The Falcon in Mexico

The Falcon in Mexico(1944)

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teaser The Falcon in Mexico (1944)

The Falcon in Mexico (1944) is the 9th of 16 Falcon whodunits produced by RKO Radio Pictures and the fifth to star Tom Conway, who inherited the series from his younger brother, George Sanders. Sanders had first appeared as rogue adventurer Gay Lawrence in The Gay Falcon (1941), after having played the similar Simon Templar, aka The Saint, in five films based on the mystery novels of Leslie Charteris. When Sanders grew weary of playing The Falcon, RKO teamed him up with Conway for The Falcon's Brother (1942), which ended with Gay Lawrence's heroic death and Tom shouldering the family business alone. The Falcon in Mexico finds Tom drawn into a murder investigation in which he is the prime suspect; following the trail of evidence to Mexico, he uncovers a murder-for-profit plot involving a long-dead artist who may or may not be truly deceased. Made inexpensively (the average Falcon feature cost in the neighborhood of $125,000), The Falcon in Mexico derives great production value from its South of the Border setting-made possible through the reuse of footage from Orson Welles' unfinished anthology It's All True (1942); with segments shot in Mexico and Brazil, It's All True was to have been Welles' third RKO picture, until the production fell victim to a studio regime change. At the time of its release, The Falcon in Mexico earned high critical marks, with Boxoffice declaring it "one of the best of the tried-and-true whodunit series." Conway would play The Falcon seven more times before RKO retired the franchise in 1946.

By Richard Harland Smith

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