John McCallum in Valley of the Eagles (1951)

Certainly Not Electrifying

Norwegian scientist Dr. Nils Ahlen (John McCallum) has created a device which is able to take sound waves and convert them into electrical energy, powerful enough to supply electricity for a small town. Of course technology like this is extremely valuable and Nils returns to his home to find the place turned upside down, his wife Helga (Mary Laura Wood) and assistant missing along with the keys to his lab and when he heads there his machine is missing to. It appears that Helga and his assistant are heading across the frozen tundra with Russia their destination and so the scientist teams up with Inspector Peterson (Jack Warner) and a local to try and track them down and recover the device.

"Valley of the Eagles" begins with a non-descript musical score combined with non-descript footage of rooftops and non descript credits in a bog standard font. Can you see where I am going with this? If not then to put it bluntly "Valley of the Eagles" is a non-descript little movie which wants to be an adventure and a drama but fails to generate the level of drama and intensity to be anything close to captivating. Part of the problem appears to be that "Valley of the Eagles" was made on a limited budget and time scale with scene which whilst using plenty of shadow lack and finesse and that in turn makes them simply wordy, filled with dialogue which doesn't actually movie the story forwards.

I think the real trouble with "Valley of the Eagles" is that all its possibilities from being an exciting thriller involving espionage as well as survival when it comes to the frozen tundra it simply ends up laborious, trudging through scene after scene without bringing the story to life. As such whilst May Laura Wood is attention grabbing because of her looks, the rest of the characters are generic and forgettable with none of the actors managing to given them any original characteristics to make them memorable.

What this all boils down to is that "Valley of the Eagles" starts with a non-descript set of credits and fails to rise to the occasion with anything more than just non-descript characters and drama which lacks excitement.