We lost Mickey Rooney this week. He was a performer for 92 of his 93 years. Beginning at age six or seven, he starred in 78 "Mickie McGuire" films, based on the Toonerville Trolley comic strip. and, of course, we all remember him as Andy Hardy or from working with Judy Garland. By the time he was 19, Mickey was the biggest movie star in the world. From Boys Town and Young Tom Edison to The Black Stallion and Night at the Museum, he always delivered the goods. Ever the hoofer, he wowed everyone on stage with Ann Miller in Sugar Babies.
For me, though, one of his most memorable performances was in the atrocious1960 film Platinum High School, in which he played a tough ex-marine investigating his son's death at a posh military academy. I couldn't find that movie online (although there were trailers and clips of Conway Twitty singing the title song), so let me present 1950's Quicksand, starring Rooney, Jeanne Cagney, and Peter Lorre. (Look closely and you'll see future Mouseketeer leader Jimmy Dodd as "Buzz.") Written by Robert Smith (who also wrote Platinum High School) and directed by Irving Pichel (The Most Dangerous Game, Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid, and Destination Moon, among others), Quicksand is a neat little noir and well worth your attention.
And, so long, Mickey.
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