BOOTLEG FILES 668: “Up in the Air” (1940 Monogram feature starring Frankie Darro and Mantan Moreland).
LAST SEEN: On YouTube.
AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: On public domain labels.
REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A lapsed copyright.
CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: It would be great if this little film was digitally restored.
The 1940 Monogram Pictures feature “Up in the Air” may not be the best film of its era, but its surplus amount of ideas crammed into a compact 62-minute running time certainly makes it the busiest. Part-mystery and part-comedy, with musical numbers and a strange mix of egregious and progressive attitudes on race, this little B-level production has more pep than most A-grade flicks.