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LAWRENCE TIERNEY & ANNE JEFFREYS RETURN FOR 'STEP BY STEP'

Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP Year: 1946 Rating: ****

Lawrence Tierney with Anne Jeffreys, the gangster and moll from DILLINGER, return for STEP BY STEP, a programmer that involves crime yet is only partially film noir and, with an endearing mascot dog liken to (but a different breed than) THE THIN MAN franchise, it's a breezy ride...

Jeffreys is the newly-hired secretary for a politician working from a beachfront mansion and, in-between top-secret office work, she meets a shirtless Tierney on the beach... after his dog breaks the ice (why most men own them)... and from that point, Tierney has her number...

Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP with George Cleveland

Not just because she's blonde and gorgeous but also befitting the plot since, with a date in mind, he wanders up to the mansion where Jeffreys' spunky-hot Evelyn is now a grimacing blond-haired Myrna Dell...

So what the audience realizes beyond the different dame is that she's working for another man entirely (Jason Robards Sr.)... obviously a partner-in-crime for a kidnapping, here involving not Russia but, although set in 1946, vengeful Nazis, providing a kind of Cold War underline...

Jason Robards Sr. with Myrna Dell in STEP BY STEP

And similar to the later NORTH BY NORTHWEST, the bogus group has carefully replaced rich important people in a luxurious manor and, like that film's predecessor also by Alfred Hitchcock, SABOTEUR (which in itself was inspired by THE 39 STEPS), this Phil Rosen RKO venture has the couple warming up as they figure out the mazy situation at hand...

Including the norish wrong-man element (the couple pose as newlyweds with cops on their trail), STEP BY STEP takes the most screen-time at a rural motel where a friendly old-timer becomes yet another sidekick as the villains, despite being in a lightweight thriller, do mean deadly business, keeping the DILLINGER couple on their toes — a shame they didn't do more films together but, no matter, this little traipse gets better and better with every viewing.

Title Card for STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney in STEP BY STEP
Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney. with Myrna Dell in STEP BY STEP
Lawrence Tierney. with Myrna Dell in STEP BY STEP
James Flavin and Lawrence Tierney. in STEP BY STEP
STEP BY STEP Finally on Blu Ray: from Warner Archives
Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in STEP BY STEP
The Dog from STEP BY STEP

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