Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

March 20, 2021, Main Title for Tampico

This week’s mystery movie was the 1944 Twentieth Century-Fox film “Tampico,” with Edward G. Robinson, Lynn Bari, Victor McLaglen, Robert Bailey, Marc Lawrence, E.J. Ballantine, Mona Maris and Tonio Selwart.

Screenplay by Kenneth Gamet, Fred Niblo Jr. and Richard Macaulay. Original story and adaptation by Ladislas Fodor.

Photography by Charles Clarke, art direction by James Basevi and Albert Hogsett. Set decorations by Thomas Little and Al Orenbach. Edited by Robert Fritch. Costumes by Yvonne Wood. Makeup by Guy Pearce. Photographic effects by Fred Sersen. Dances staged by Geneva Sawyer. Sound by W.D. Flick and Roger Heman. Music by David Raksin. Musical direction by Emil Newman.

Produced by Robert Bassler. Directed by Lothar Mendes.

“Tampico” is available on DVD from Amazon. TCM lists it as “backorder.”

I received a request for a whodunit, and after sifting through all the well-known ones in the trades, I came up with “Tampico.” Edward G. Robinson is always worth watching, even in minor films and this is really a minor one. I can’t think of another movie in which Edward G. Robinson falls in love and gets married, though in his long career there were probably others.

This is a World War II yarn about loose lips sinking ships and is more of a spy story – who is spilling secrets to the enemy rather than who did it. Suspicion falls on Robinson’s wife, a woman picked up from a sunken ship, a nightclub entertainer with a mysterious past trying to get back to the U.S. The resolution? I won’t spoil it. Maybe it looked good on paper or in a short story. On film, not so much.

Let’s see which New York Times critic hated it….

That would be PPK (June 2, 1944):

“Tampico,” which opened at Loew’s State yesterday, has all the elements of good, suspenseful drama. But somehow as yard after yard unrolls it becomes increasingly evident that nothing unlooked for is going to come about.

March 15, 2021, Mystery Photo

For Monday, we have a mystery woman. Also Back of the Head Guy.

Update: This is Ann Corcoran. Back of the Head Guy may be Edward G. Robinson or a stand-in. I have my suspicions.

March 16, 2021, Mystery Photo

For Tuesday, we have another mysterious gent. And how about those lapels? Also the return of Back of the Head Guy.

Update: This is Tonio Selwart and Edward G. Robinson as Back of the Head Guy.

March 16, 2021, Mystery Photo

Also for Tuesday, we have this fun-loving couple.

Update: This is Robert Bailey and Mona Maris.

March 17, 2021, Mystery Photo

For “Aha Wednesday,” we have this mysterious gent. Would you believe it? He is telling Back of the Head Guy (who has the day off) that he does not approve of such goings-on.

Update: This is Nestor Paiva.

Brain Trust roll call: Sylvia E. (Back of the Head Guy), Mike Hawks (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and all mystery guests) and Thom and Megan (mystery movie and all mystery guests).

March 18, 2021, Mystery Photo

For “Aha Thursday,” we have this mysterious gent.

Update: This is Victor McLaglen.

Brain Trust roll call: L.C. (mystery movie and mystery cast), Floyd Thursby (mystery movie, Back of the Head Guy and Wednesday’s mystery officer), Howard Mandelbaum (Wednesday’s mystery officer), B.J. Merholz (mystery movie), Mike Hawks (Wednesday’s mystery officer), Sylvia E. (mystery movie and Monday’s and Tuesday’s mystery guests), Megan and Thom (Wednesday’s mystery officer) and Sheila (mystery movie and Wednesday’s mystery officer).

March 19, 2021, Mystery Photo

For Friday, we have this mysterious gent.

Update: This is Trevor Bardette.

March 19, 2021, Mystery Photo

We also have this mystery woman.

Update: This is Helen Brown.

March 19, 2021, Mystery Photo

And finally, Back of the Head Guy makes his appearance. Also our mysterious leading lady.

Update: This is Edward G. Robinson and Lynn Bari.

Brain Trust roll call: Mary Mallory (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Sue Slutzky (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Howard Mandelbaum (Thursday’s mysterious gent), David Inman (Thursday’s mystery gent), Mike Hawks (Thursday’s mystery gent), Anne Papineau (mystery movie, Tuesday’s mysterious fun-loving officer and Thursday’s mystery gent), Patrick (mystery movie, Back of the Head Guy and Thursday’s mystery gent), Megan and Thom (Thursday’s mystery gent), Sylvia E. (Thursday’s mystery gent and peering into the future for Friday’s guests) and Blackwing Jenny (mystery movie, Back of the Head Guy and Thursday’s mystery gent).

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in Film, Hollywood, Mystery Photo and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

49 Responses to Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

  1. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Carol Bruce.


  2. Gary says:

    Looks like Raymond Burr to me.


  3. Jean Heather in NATIONAL BARN DANCE (1944).


  4. Sylvia E. says:

    Just for fun, BOTHG looks like Claude Rains to me. Way too early to really guess, though.


  5. Sylvia E. says:

    Now he looks like Edward G. to me.

    I bet Howard gets it today. He’s amazing at this.


  6. mike hawks says:

    Ann Corcoran, Edward G. Robinson (back of head guy), Tonio Selwart, Robert Bailey and Mona Maris in TAMPICO.


  7. Rogét-L.A. says:

    Just another guess for BOTHG — Edmond O’Brien?


  8. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    TAMPICO (1944)
    Monday: Ann Corcoran, Edward G. Robinson
    Tuesday: Tonio Selwart, Robinson; Mona Maris, Robert Bailey


  9. Thom and Megan says:

    Our movie is Tampico, with Ann Corcoran and Edward G. Robinson yesterday. For today, we have Tonio Selwart, Robert Bailey, and Mona Maris.


  10. Mary Mallory says:

    YOU WERE NEVER LOVELIER. Lina Romay today and Xavier Cugat as the BOTH guy both days.


  11. LC says:

    Tampico (1944) w/Edward G. Robinson, Ann Corcoran, Bob Bailey (Johnny Dollar), Mona Maris, Victor McLagen, Lynn Bari…


  12. Floyd Thursby says:

    BOTHG is Edward G. Robinson and Mr. Wednesday is Nestor Paiva. The movie is “Tampico.”


  13. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Nestor Paiva


  14. B.J. Merholz says:



  15. mike hawks says:

    Nestor Paiva.


  16. Earl Boebert says:

    As a veteran of watching a bazillion episodes of “The Millionaire,” I’m stuck on thinking BOTHG is Marvin Miller. Probably wrong.


  17. Sylvia E. says:

    I think the movie is “Tampico” 1944, but I’m torn because there’s another Edward G. film with navy personnel from about the same time period. I’m on the hunt to confirm and plug in names.

    I KNEW Howard would get it yesterday!


  18. Megan and Thom says:

    Today’s mystery guest is Nestor Paiva.


  19. Sheila says:

    Nestor Paiva for Wednesday, ‘Tampico’?


  20. Sylvia E. says:

    Okay, locking in on “Tampico” 1944
    BOTHG, Mr. Robinson, is all over the place, along with:
    Ann Corcoran
    Tonio Selwart
    Robert Baily
    Mona Maris
    Not sure about the guy in the final image on Wednesday – still hunting.


  21. Charles Kjelland says:

    Don Defore in the Tuesday uniform?


  22. Charles Kjelland says:

    Without Reservations, John Wayne et al?


  23. Mary Mallory says:

    TAMPICO. Ann Corcoran and Edward G. Robinson as BOTH guy Monday, E. J. Ballantine and EGR, Robert Bailey and Mona Maris Tuesday, Nestor Paiva Wednesday, and Victor McLaglen today.


  24. Sue Slutzky says:

    Mon – Ann Corcoran
    Tue – Tonio Selwart, Robert Bailey, Mona Maris
    Wed – Nestor Paiva
    Thu – Victor McLaglen


  25. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Victor McLaglen.


  26. David Inman says:

    Victor McLaglen today, so this is maybe “Call Out the Marines”?


  27. mike hawks says:

    Victor McLaglen.


  28. Anne Papineau says:

    Aha! Victor McLaglen in Tampico. With Robert Bailey as one-half of the fun-loving couple.


  29. Patrick says:

    Thursday is Victor McLaglen; if BOTHG is Edward G. Robinson then this is probably Tampico from 1944.


  30. Megan and Thom says:

    Today’s guest is Victor McLaglen.


  31. Sylvia E. says:

    Thursday has Victor McLaughlin (nice way to disguise his face.)
    So tomorrow will have a face front view of Mr Robinson, Lynn Bari and Marc Lawrence. Maybe Trevor Bardette.

    Looking forward to seeing tomorrow’s breakdown.


  32. At least I can guess Vic McLaglen! All is not lost. Back of the head did look to me like Eddie Robinson on Monday-why didn’t I take a chance? “Tampico”(which I’ve never heard of before).


  33. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Trevor Bardette; Helen Brown; Edward G. Robinson, Lynn Bari.


  34. Mary Mallory says:

    Marc Lawrence, Helen Brown, EGR and Lynn Bari.


  35. Benito says:

    Victor McLaglen and Eddie G in TAMPICO 1944. Saw this awhile ago


  36. Sue Slutzky says:

    Friday: Trevor Bardette, Helen Brown, Edward G. Robinson, and Lynn Bari


  37. FunkyPhD says:

    Tampico. BOTH guy: Edward G. Robinson. Victor McLaglen as Thursday’s mysterious gent. Lynn Bari as the leading lady.


  38. mike hawks says:

    Trevor Bardette, ?, E.G. Robinson and Lynn Bari.


  39. McDee says:

    I know it isn’t, but Thursday’s guest looks a lot like Oliver Stone to me.


  40. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    In TIGER SHARK and its reworking, MANPOWER, Robinson falls in love and marries with tragic results.


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