Thursday, June 24, 2010

Trouble Along The Way (1953)

Fellow classic cinemaphile Don McKeon recently told me about another classic film that mentions Scranton in passing. The film is 1953's Trouble Along The Way.

Directed by Michael Curtiz (Casablanca, Mildred Pierce, White Christmas), Trouble Along The Way stars John Wayne as Steve Williams, a down-on-his-luck football coach and single father who is recruited by struggling St. Anthony's College in New York City to produce a winning team. Along the way, Steve falls in love with Alice Singleton (Donna Reed), the social worker fighting to get Steve's ex-wife legal custody of their daughter. The film also features an uncredited James Dean as a "football spectator".

About an hour into the film, John Wayne's character Steve Williams (who also says "Wilkes-Barre" several times in the 1942 film Reunion In France) is watching 16 mm films of potential football recruits for St. Anthony's football team with his buddies Stan Schwegler (Chuck Connors) and Moose McCall (Bill Nadovich):

Stan: We've been over these films ten times, Steve. We've got everything but a passer.

Steve: What happened to that kid from Scranton?

Moose: One of the California schools got to him first.

Unfortunately, Trouble Along The Way is not available to borrow from the Lackawanna County Library System. But you can purchase a copy for less than $10 from

Much thanks again to the ever-groovy movie buff Don McKeon for this reference.

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