Fast and Loose (1939)

# 14782 IMDb Passed | Approved 

Fast and Loose (1939

taglineFast as FAST COMPANY and twice a funny!

By Edwin L. Marin

Comedy, Mystery, Crime, Drama (1h 20min)


Rated 6.3 after 425 votes on 06-Oct-18.


The scrap of the Shakespeare manuscript is priceless. Nick Torrent owns it and is selling it. But then he is murdered and the manuscript is stolen. Joel Sloane is a rare book dealer and part time detective. Since he was trying to buy the manuscript for Mr. Oates, he is a suspect so he tries to solve the case. As the bodies pile up, Joel must solve the case or else Garda will be wearing black.

Popular faces

Robert Montgomery Rosalind Russell Reginald Owen Ralph Morgan Etienne Girardot Alan Dinehart Jo Ann Sayers Joan Marsh


From the same director


Robert Montgomery (Joel Sloane), Rosalind Russell (Garda Sloane), Reginald Owen (Vincent Charlton), Ralph Morgan (Nicholas Torrent), Etienne Girardot (Christopher Oates), Alan Dinehart (Dave Hilliard), Jo Ann Sayers (Christina Torrent), Joan Marsh (Bobby Neville), John Hubbard (Phil Sergeant (as Anthony Allan)), Tom Collins (Gerald Torrent), Sidney Blackmer ('Lucky' Nolan), Donald Douglas (Forbes), Ian Wolfe (Wilkes), Mary Forbes (Mrs. Torrent), Leonard Carey (Craddock), Roy Barcroft (Reilly - Casino Bodyguard (uncredited)), Don Brodie (Detective Jackson (uncredited)), Don Castle (Desk Clerk (uncredited)), Naomi Childers (Casino Patron - Roulette Player (uncredited)), Jules Cowles (Casino Patron (uncredited)), Lester Dorr (Driver (uncredited)), Eddie Foster (Nolan Henchman in Car (uncredited)), Buddy Messinger (Clerk (uncredited)), Frank Orth (Detective Hendricks (uncredited)), Max Wagner (Nolan's Henchman (uncredited))...


Harry Kurnitz (original screen play)

Produced by

IMDb Comment

This is the second installment of a series created by Harry Kurnitz from his book "Fast Company," featuring a husband and wife team, Joel and Garda Sloane, rare book dealers who were amateur detectives. The first outing was "Fast Company" starring Melvyn Douglas and Florence Rice. "Fast and Loose" came next. Then the Sloane's misadventures came to a screeching halt with "Fast and Furious" featuring Franchot Tone and Ann Sothern." One reason for the demise was the rapid turnover in the lead roles with different actors playing Joel and Garda in each film. A common thread for all three was the writing of Harry Kurnitz which accounts for the similarities in dialog and story structures.

True, the series may remind viewers of Nick and Nora Charles but in reality there are many husband and wife flicks from the period that were somewhat patterned after the successful and popular "The Thin Man." These three films can stand on their own without such comparisons being necessary. Of the three, the first "Fast Company" is possibly the best with Douglas and Rice making a fine pair of sleuths. But the other two have merits of their own.

Robert Montgomery and the indomitable Rosalind Russell interact well with each other. The story about a forged Shakespeare which leads to murder with a whole gallery of suspects isn't always easy to follow but it's worth the time and effort. Montgomery and Russell share many a witty line and comeback, not quite as fast, nor as cutting, as the repartee between Russell and Cary Grant in "His Girl Friday" which was released the following year but still enough gibes to keep all fast and loose. There is also a running joke that carries on to the end involving a donut cushion from a previous case when Joel Slaone was shot in the tush.

The title is apt for the script and direction which are fast and loose. Not on a par with "The Thin Man," but still an entertaining piece of fluff.

Memorable quotes

Joel Sloane: Go away.
Garda Sloane: Come back later.
Joel Sloane: Nobody home.

9 total 


Tom Kennedy was originally scheduled to play "Reilly" but was replaced by Roy Barcroft.

2 total 



Other titles

Um Susto por Minuto (Brazil) • Det stjaalne Manuskript (Denmark) • Invitación peligrosa (Spain) • Kadonnut käsikirjoitus (Finland) • Mon mari conduit L'enquête (France) • To klemmeno heirografo (Greece (transliterated ISO-LATIN-1 title)) • Moj muž vodi - istragu! (Hitac u noći) (Croatia; Yugoslavia (Croatian title)) • Il manoscritto scomparso (Italy) • Meu Marido Investiga (Portugal) • Det stulna manuskriptet (Sweden) 



Finland:K-16 / United Kingdom:A / United States:Passed / United States:Approved


Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) (presents) (produced by: Loew's Incorporated)


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