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Ghosts on the Loose

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Ghosts on the Loose starring Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Bela Lugosi, Ava Gardner
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Ghosts on the Loose starring Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Bela Lugosi, Ava Gardner

In short, Ghosts on the Loose is a haunted house comedy starring the East Side Kids. The beautiful sister (Ava Gardner in her screen debut) of Glimpy (Huntz Hall) getting married. After some typical hijinks at the wedding, she gets married to Jack (Rick Vallin) and they’re off on their honeymoon. The East Side Kids, however, are planning a special present for them …

Ghosts on the Loose starring Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Bela Lugosi, Ava Gardner

Since the newlyweds have bought a small house, the East Side Kids decide to do them a favor. Their wedding present is cleaning their new house. After some slapstick by Glimpy, they break into the wrong house. This “spooky” house is actually a hideout for Nazi propagandists, complete with a printing press in the basement. The East Side Kids are initially unaware of this, and decide to “liberate” the furniture from the small house next door to furnish the house.

Typical haunted house shenanigans happen — eyes looking through portraits, scary voices, etc. The police are called, the honeymooners return, furniture and printing press move between the two houses. All ends well. Except that Glimpy has caught German measles from the Nazi agents (including Bela Lugosi, Dracula) and the newlyweds are quarantined in their small house for seven days – with the East Side Kids. The final sight gag has Glimpy’s measles look like small swastikas.

In conclusion, Ghosts on the Loose is a nice little comedy, nothing great but enjoyable fluff.

Cast of characters

  • Leo Gorcey (It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World) … Muggs McGinnis
  • Huntz Hall (The Bowery Boys Meet the Monsters) … Glimpy
  • Bobby Jordan (A Slight Case of Murder) … Danny
  • Bela Lugosi (Ninotchka) … Emil
  • Ava Gardner (Mogambo) … Betty
  • Rick Vallin … Jack
  • Ernest Morrison (Haunted Spooks) … Scruno
  • William ‘Billy’ Benedict (The Sting) … Benny (as Billy Benedict)
  • Stanley Clements (Spook Chasers) … Stash
  • Bobby Stone … Rocky
  • Minerva Urecal (The Ape Man) … Hilda
  • Wheeler Oakman … Tony
  • Peter Seal … Bruno
  • Frank Moran (Sullivan’s Travels) … Monk
  • Jack Mulhall (The Rogues Tavern) … Lieutenant
  • Bill Bates … Dave

Editorial review of Ghosts on the Loose courtesy of

Lugosi is an underground Nazi and Gardner makes her film debut as a nice girl in this comedy-suspense tale. Glimpy’s surprisingly beautiful sister is getting married to Jack, a young engineer, and moving to a ‘bargain’ suburban house neither has ever seen. During the honeymoon, the East Side Kids decide to fix up the house for the newlyweds…but mistakenly pick the ‘haunted’ house next door, which is occupied by some mysterious live men, dodging in and out of secret panels and clearly up to no good.

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