Brick Bradford (serial)

Brick Bradford (1947) was the 35th serial released by Columbia Pictures. It was based on the comic strip Brick Bradford, which was created by Clarence Gray and William Ritt.

Brick Bradford
Directed bySpencer Gordon Bennet
Thomas Carr
Produced bySam Katzman
Written byLewis Clay
Arthur Hoerl
George H. Plympton
Clarence Gray
Screenplay, based on the comic strip created by
Clarence Gray
and
William Ritt
StarringKane Richmond
Rick Vallin
Linda Leighton
Pierre Watkin
Music byMischa Bakaleinikoff
CinematographyIra H. Morgan
Edited byEarl Turner
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • December 18, 1947 (1947-12-18)
Running time
15 chapters
257 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

Plot

Brick Bradford is assigned by the government to aid Doctor Gregor Tymak, scientist and inventor who is working on an "Interceptor Ray" that can destroy incoming rockets. Unfortunately, it can also be used as a death ray, bringing it to the attention of foreign spy agent Laydron. Tymak uses his door into the fifth dimension to escape criminals and it takes him to the far side of the Moon (which luckily has air and is a rocky terrain without craters). There he is captured and sentenced to die by freezing to absolute zero by the Queen Khana, despot of the Moon, because they do not believe he has come from the Earth.

The action moves to the Moon as the ray requires a special element called Lunarium (with an atomic mass of 200) previously only found in a meteorite. Working with exiles in the lunar wasteland, the heroes overthrow Queen Khana and return with the Lunarium.

However, the device still requires a formula hidden on an uncharted island 200 years in the past, so Brick and sidekick Sandy Sanderson travel in Tymak's time machine, the Time Top, to retrieve it. The final third of the serial is spent on modern day Earth with more trouble from the spy Laydron.

Cast

Kane RichmondBrick Bradford
Rick VallinSandy Sanderson
Linda LeightonJune Salisbury
Pierre WatkinProfessor Salisbury
Charles QuigleyLaydron, villainous spy
Jack IngramAlbers, henchmen
Fred GrahamBlack, henchmen
John MertonDr. Tymak
Leonard PennEric Byrus, Tymak's assistant
Wheeler OakmanLouis Walthar, Tymak's assistant
Carol FormanQueen Khana
Charles KingCreed
John HartDent
Helene StanleyCarol Preston, daughter of the leader of the lunar Exiles

Production

Brick Bradford was the first of only three science fiction serials released by Columbia.[1]

The serial was broken into three sections, each of which was written by a different screenwriter. The first section, chapters one to five, was written by George Plympton. The middle section, chapters six to ten, was written by Hoerl. The end of the serial, chapters eleven to fifteen, was written by Clay.[2]

Critical reception

Harmon and Glut describes the serial as a "rather shoddy, low budget space cliffhanger." Hoerl's middle segment is full of in-jokes at the serial's expense while the final section by Clay is boring with a constant repetition of capture and escape sequences.[2]

Cline considers Brick Bradford to be a "mediocre serial that enjoyed a wide audience.".[1]

Chapter titles

  1. Atomic Defense
  2. Flight to the Moon
  3. Prisoners to the Moon
  4. Into the Volcano
  5. Bradford at Bay
  6. Back to Earth
  7. Into Another Century
  8. Buried Treasure
  9. Trapped in the Time Top
  10. The Unseen Hand
  11. Poison Gas
  12. Door to Disaster
  13. Sinister Rendezvous
  14. River of Revenge
  15. For the Peace of the World

Source:[3]

Alternative titles

  • Brick Bradford (Latin America)
  • Aventures of Brick Bradford, Les (France)
  • Zÿn Avonturen Brick Bradford, En (Belgium)

References

  1. Cline, William C. (1984). "3. The Six Faces of Adventure". In the Nick of Time. McFarland & Company, Inc. pp. 34. ISBN 0-7864-0471-X.
  2. Harmon, Jim; Donald F. Glut (1973). "2. "We Come from 'Earth', Don't You Understand?"". The Great Movie Serials: Their Sound and Fury. Routledge. pp. 45–47. ISBN 978-0-7130-0097-9.
  3. Cline, William C. (1984). "Filmography". In the Nick of Time. McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 246. ISBN 0-7864-0471-X.
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