Sunday Matinee: The Ghost Breakers

sunday-matineeBob Hope is a crime reporter who has just done an expose on a local crime boss. After the broadcast the crime boss wants to meet with Hope. Meanwhile Paulette Goddard has just inherited a plantation and a mansion in Cuba. When Hope arrives at the hotel to meet the crime boss there’s a black out and a gun fight ensues. Hope thinks he’s killed one of the crime boss’ men so he hides in Goddard’s trunk (she’s packing to go see her estate). Soon everyone is on their way to Cuba.

Ghost BreakersGoddard discovers Hope in her trunk and Hope along with his valet Willie Best agree to protect Goddard. Once they arrive in Cuba they discover a zombie, ghosts and a plot about hidden money in the mansion. Chills and comedy ensue.

The movie is pretty entertaining except for the fairly racist caricature character that Willie Best plays. The story is based on a play that was made into a movie of the same name by Cecil B. DeMille back in 1914 and was remade in 1922. Both silent versions are lost.

This film followed the success that Hope and Goddard had with his 1939 remake The Cat and the Canary and the success of both films, along with the Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein helped popularize the comedy/horror genre.

Author: Shane Hnetka

Shane Hnetka has spent most of his life watching movies and reading comic books. He has decided to use this vast knowledge for evil instead of good.