It Could Happen To You

2100. IT COULD HAPPEN TO YOU (1937-usa). WITH alan baxter, andrea leeds, astrid alwyn. Written by samuel ornttz, nathanael west, based on a story by West. Bob Ames needs $500. He needs it fast. “These days, if a fella wants to get started he’s gotta have a little capital,” he observes. Ames must have the loot to complete the purchase of the Foreign American Institute, a school where immigrants learn U.S. history with the purpose of qualifying for American citizenship. Somewhere along the line Ames has become a Jekyll-Hyde. This aspiring educator has been toiling in a bookie joint and promptly attempts to stiff his boss for the money. Before you can recite the Pledge of Allegiance, he finds himself involved in murder and blackmail. Coming to Ames’ defense is his nice-guy half-brother, who has just graduated from law school and is unaware of his guilt. There is a fascinating character in the film: the sinister Professor Schwab, the school’s proprietor who wishes to sell the Institute because he is returning to Europe. Schwab is a thinly disguised fascist who dreams of the time when his political philosophy will be the rule in America. In this regard the film is one of the first ever to acknowledge the fascist threat then brewing in Europe, The script is by fabled novelist Nathanael West, who wrote for the movies during the 193o’s; and Samuel Ornitz, best-known as one of the Hollywood Ten, blacklisted during the post- World War II Hollywood witch hunts. Also look for jack carson at the beginning in a bit role as a cad. 65 minutes. Drama