The Best Man Wins (1935)

  • The Best Man WinsDirector: Erle C. Kenton
  • Actors: Edmund Lowe, Jack Holt, Bela Lugosi, Florence Rice
  • Writers: Ben G. Kohn, Ethel Hill, Bruce Manning
  • Studio: Columbia Pictures Corp.

Nick (Jack Holt), the chief diver of a salvage boat, saves the life of diver friend Tobu (star Edmond Lowe from Chandu the Magician), whose arm has to be amputated. Nick becomes a police Sergeant and the bitter Tobu accepts dangerous illegal diving work to avoid standing in depression era bread lines.

They both love an English teacher (Florence Rice, later in Miracles for Sale). Tobu’s new boss is the pipe smoking astrology expert smuggler Dr. Boehm (Bela Lugosi). When the cops arrive on his boat, Boehm feeds hot jewels to his fish in a tank. Tobu plays underwater “golf” with a skull and closeups of the faces of divers in peril are unsettling.

Kenton had also directed Lugosi in Island of Lost Souls (1933). Forrester Harvey (from Tarzan and The Invisible Man) is Tobu’s assistant. This Columbia feature was released the same year as The Raven, The Mark of the Vampire and three other Lugosi roles, all for different studios.


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