Mr. Soft Touch


1h 33m 1949
Mr. Soft Touch

Brief Synopsis

After being betrayed, a gangster hangs out in a settlement house while seeking revenge.

Photos & Videos

Mr. Soft Touch - Movie Posters
Mr. Soft Touch - Lobby Cards
Mr. Soft Touch - Behind-the-Scenes Photos

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Drama
Release Date
Sep 1949
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 28 Jul 1949
Production Company
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 33m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Synopsis

At Christmas time in San Francisco, Joe Miracle steals $100,000 from the River Club, which he used to own. After evading his pursuers, Joe hides out with Victor Christopher, the brother of his dead partner Leo, and Victor's wife Clara. Clara has purchased a berth for Joe on the next ship leaving the city. The ship, however, will not depart until the following night. While Joe is trying to decide where he will hide until then, the police demand to search the apartment. At first Joe believes they are looking for the stolen money, but learns that they want to arrest Victor for disturbing the peace and beating Clara. When the police mistake Joe for Victor and arrest him for the night, Joe believes that his problems are solved, but Jenny Jones, a social worker, persuades the judge to give Joe a suspended sentence. Joe then suggests that he stay at the settlement house until he can control his urge to beat Clara. Later Joe telephones Clara and asks her to bring him the stolen money. While Joe is hanging Christmas decorations, a group of teenagers talk him into a dice game. Joe wins from the boys the money they were supposed to spend on a Christmas tree. Later, he secretly returns the money to Jenny's desk, leaving the boys to figure out a solution to their problem. Joe then hides the stolen money in the gym. After the boys cut down a tree from the park, Jenny persuades the police not to press charges against them, but is angry that Joe gambled with them. Then, when Joe accidentally falls on the piano and breaks it, she is ready to ask him to leave. Her attitude softens a little, however, when she discovers the returned money in her desk. Later, Joe visits a piano store that is actually a front for a bookie operation and coerces the owner into providing a free piano to replace the broken one. While at the store, Joe is spotted by newspaper columnist "Early" Byrd, who follows him to the settlement house and questions Jenny about him. After the janitor finds a gun hidden in Joe's mattress, Jenny reveals that she knows Joe's real identity and asks him to leave. When he objects, Jenny shows him her hearing aid and tells him about her abusive father, whose beatings made her deaf. Their discussion is interrupted by the delivery of new towels, sheets, blankets and several bathtubs--all arranged by Joe. Joe, who has gone to his room to pack, finds Byrd waiting for him, and from him learns that Leo was killed by the syndicate when he refused to sell the River Club while Joe was in the Army. Just before he leaves, Joe accompanies Jenny to visit some poor Polish-Americans. He asks Jenny to leave the country with him, but before she can make a decision, the syndicate, alerted by Byrd, corners him and demands that he return the stolen money. Although Jenny begs Joe to comply, he insists that the money is rightfully his. The gangsters then start a fire in the settlement house and are able to retrieve the money in the confusion, but the building burns to the ground. Later, Joe sneaks into the River Club and forces Barney Teener, the boss, to replace the money taken by his friends. Then, disguised as Santa Claus, Joe donates the entire amount to the settlement house building fund. As he leaves, Joe is shot by a gang member. Jenny rushes to him, and both realize that after he recovers, they will spend their lives together.

Photo Collections

Mr. Soft Touch - Movie Posters
Mr. Soft Touch - Movie Posters
Mr. Soft Touch - Lobby Cards
Mr. Soft Touch - Lobby Cards
Mr. Soft Touch - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Mr. Soft Touch - Behind-the-Scenes Photos

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Drama
Release Date
Sep 1949
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 28 Jul 1949
Production Company
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 33m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Articles

Mr. Soft Touch


Mr. Soft Touch (1949) is an intriguing blend of classic film noir and sweet romantic comedy, sprinkled with a generous helping of holiday cheer and a dash of Damon Runyon. Glenn Ford stars as Joe Miracle, a World War II veteran who returns to San Francisco following the war to discover that the mob, in his absence, has cheated him out of his share in a nightclub business and murdered his partner. To even the score, Joe robs the nightclub and makes plans to leave town on Christmas Eve with the loot. In the meantime, Joe hides out in a settlement house run by Jenny Jones (Evelyn Keyes), a compassionate social worker who mistakes Joe for a down-on-his-luck musician who needs a helping hand. As Joe begins to fall for Jenny, however, a newspaper columnist (John Ireland) discovers his true identity, and the mob is soon hot on his trail. With the settlement house in danger and his feelings torn over Jenny, Joe must decide where his heart truly lies.

This fast-paced entertaining genre hybrid has the interesting distinction of having not one, but two directors behind the camera: Gordon Douglas and Henry Levin. Douglas (The Detective [1968], They Call Me Mister Tibbs! [1970]) received his start in motion pictures under the guidance of the legendary Hal Roach, directing a number of Our Gang shorts in the 1930s and gradually working his way up to features in Hollywood. The co-director, Henry Levin, also enjoyed a long and varied career, going on to direct such notable films as Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959), Where the Boys Are (1960), and The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962).

Fans of Glenn Ford will enjoy his touching role as Joe Miracle in this unsung and rarely seen holiday gem. He and lovely leading lady Evelyn Keyes make a winning pair and handle both elements of drama and romantic comedy in Mr. Soft Touch with ease.

By Andrea Passafiume
Mr. Soft Touch

Mr. Soft Touch

Mr. Soft Touch (1949) is an intriguing blend of classic film noir and sweet romantic comedy, sprinkled with a generous helping of holiday cheer and a dash of Damon Runyon. Glenn Ford stars as Joe Miracle, a World War II veteran who returns to San Francisco following the war to discover that the mob, in his absence, has cheated him out of his share in a nightclub business and murdered his partner. To even the score, Joe robs the nightclub and makes plans to leave town on Christmas Eve with the loot. In the meantime, Joe hides out in a settlement house run by Jenny Jones (Evelyn Keyes), a compassionate social worker who mistakes Joe for a down-on-his-luck musician who needs a helping hand. As Joe begins to fall for Jenny, however, a newspaper columnist (John Ireland) discovers his true identity, and the mob is soon hot on his trail. With the settlement house in danger and his feelings torn over Jenny, Joe must decide where his heart truly lies. This fast-paced entertaining genre hybrid has the interesting distinction of having not one, but two directors behind the camera: Gordon Douglas and Henry Levin. Douglas (The Detective [1968], They Call Me Mister Tibbs! [1970]) received his start in motion pictures under the guidance of the legendary Hal Roach, directing a number of Our Gang shorts in the 1930s and gradually working his way up to features in Hollywood. The co-director, Henry Levin, also enjoyed a long and varied career, going on to direct such notable films as Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959), Where the Boys Are (1960), and The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962). Fans of Glenn Ford will enjoy his touching role as Joe Miracle in this unsung and rarely seen holiday gem. He and lovely leading lady Evelyn Keyes make a winning pair and handle both elements of drama and romantic comedy in Mr. Soft Touch with ease. By Andrea Passafiume

Quotes

Trivia