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The point that "Malaya" gets across is that greed has no nationality but Americans have. Jimmy Stewart and Spencer Tracy play two American nondescripts, one a newspaperman and the other a convict. They are sent to Singapore to steal rubber from the Japs during the war. The rubber stealing business makes a reasonably good Terry-and-the-Pirates adventure story; but the obscure transition by Tracy and Stewart from riff-raff to flag-bearers makes the whole plot implausible and over-sentimental.
Sydney Greenstreet and Valentina Cortesa, the mainstays of the supporting cast, do an excellent job of keeping up the oriental atmosphere. Greenstreet, a stock character in exotic movies, plays a saloon-keeper who trades with both Japs and Allies, while Cortesa is a halfbreed singer who does just about the same thing, but what they do or say is unimportant; it's the remarkable far-eastern aura they create that counts.
"Passport to Pimlico" is a British situational comedy designed quite obviously to humor a British public that is sick of rationing and restrictions. An unexploded German bomb suddenly blows up, revealing a treasure cache in which there is a document proving that the borough of Pimlico in London does not belong to Britain. Consequently, police protection, ration cards and other legal instruments become suspended, and the inhabitants, for a few days, are sovereigns unto themselves. Though Stanley Holloway offers some excellent touches as the exofficio mayor of Pimlico, most of the scenes are only moderately amusing to an American audience; rationing and queues are too far behind us.
Incidentally, the University Theater deserves some sort of commendation for the current run of English second features. You don't have to worry so much coming in early for the main event.
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