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I Accuse My Parents (1944)

Directed by Sam Newfield, I Accuse My Parents opens with mild-mannered teen James “Jimmy” Wilson (Robert Lowell) appearing before a judge on charges of manslaughter. When asked to speak in his own defense, he pauses, and reflects to say; “I accuse my parents” for not giving him the home life he should have had! The story then unravels via flashback just how such a nice boy like Jimmy could end up in court on such a charge as manslaughter!

In High School Jimmy wins an award for an essay he wrote describing the ideal home he supposedly has. Eager to tell his parents, he goes home to a house full of empty liquor bottles, and parents distracted by arguing with each other. Jimmy is embarrassed when his mother (Vivienne Osbourne) shows up drunk to the graduation planning committee. Later, his father (John Miljan) gives him money instead of celebrating his birthday with him.

Feeling unwanted, Jimmy decides to become independent and gets a job selling shoes after school and meets nightclub singer Kitty Reed (Mary Beth Hughes). He delivers a pair of shoes to her house and then meets her later at the nightclub where she works. The two begin dating, Jim unaware that Kitty is also the moll of gangster Charles Blake (George Meeker), who specializes in fencing stolen jewelry.

Charles identifies Jimmy as innocent and gullible so recruits him to deliver packages and messages after work and school. Jim gets paid highly for his errands, so he never questions what exactly he is delivering. Soon Jimmy is pulled into a criminal world he is not prepaired for and has to grow up quickly!

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