IMDb > The Racket (1928)

The Racket (1928) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

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Director:
Writers:
Bartlett Cormack (from the stage success of)
Bartlett Cormack (adaptation)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Racket on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 November 1928 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
An honest police captain vows to bring down a powerful bootlegger who is protected by corrupt politicians and judges. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. See more »
User Reviews:
A Tad Too Early See more (21 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Thomas Meighan ... Captain McQuigg

Louis Wolheim ... Nick Scarsi

Marie Prevost ... Helen Hayes

G. Pat Collins ... Johnson (as Pat Collins)
Henry Sedley ... Spike

George E. Stone ... Joe Scarsi (as George Stone)
Sam De Grasse ... Welch (as Sam DeGrasse)
Richard 'Skeets' Gallagher ... Miller (as Skeets Gallagher)
Lee Moran ... Pratt
John Darrow ... Ames
Lucien Prival ... Chick
Dan Wolheim ... Sergeant Turck
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Frank Austin ... Man at Funeral (uncredited)

Walter Brennan ... Man on Street in Front of Barber Shop (uncredited)
Jim Farley ... Detective (uncredited)
Tony Marlo ... Chick's Chauffeur (uncredited)
Burr McIntosh ... The Old Man - Political Kingpin (uncredited)
Pat McKee ... Man at Funeral (uncredited)
Lewis Milestone ... Speakeasy Doorman with Cigar (uncredited)
William H. O'Brien ... Detective Frisking Nick (uncredited)
Jack Perry ... Scarsi's Henchman (uncredited)
Dick Rush ... Detective (uncredited)
Charles Sullivan ... Scarsi's Henchman (uncredited)
Harry Wilson ... Man at Funeral (uncredited)

Directed by
Lewis Milestone 
 
Writing credits
Bartlett Cormack (from the stage success of)

Bartlett Cormack (adaptation)

Del Andrews (scenario)

Tom Miranda (titles)

Harry Behn  scenario (uncredited)

Produced by
Howard Hughes .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Robert Israel 
 
Cinematography by
Tony Gaudio (photographed by)
 
Film Editing by
Eddie Adams (edited by)
 
Art Direction by
Julian Boone Fleming  (as Julian Fleming)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Nate Watt .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Karen Eckhoff .... sound engineer (2004 alternate version)
Vladislav Kvapil .... recording director (2004 alternate version)
Vit Muzik .... recording director (2004 alternate version)
 
Visual Effects by
Jeffery Masino .... digital restoration (2004 alternate version)
 
Editorial Department
David Block .... telecine: Ascent Media (2004 alternate version)
Alfonso Gomez .... restoration film editor (2004 alternate version)
 
Music Department
Robert Israel .... conductor: The Robert Israel Orchestra, Europe (2004 alternate version)
Robert Israel .... music arranger (2004 alternate version)
 
Other crew
Howard Hughes .... presenter (as Howard R. Hughes)
Frank Lunn .... legal services: Rosen, Feig, Conley and Lunn (2004 alternate version) (as Frank M. Lunn)
 
Thanks
Margaret Bodde .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Peter Bogdanovich .... dedicatee: Robert Israel's music
Evans Butterworth .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Sean Cameron .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version)
Sean Clark .... special thanks: UNLV Dept. of Film (2004 alternate version)
Michelle Cooley .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version)
Pirro Dollani .... special thanks: University of Nevada Las Vegas (2004 alternate version)
Frank Donner .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Brian Friedman .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
John F. Gallagher .... special thanks: UNLV Foundation (2004 alternate version) (as John F. Gallagher Ph.D.)
Randy Haberkamp .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
James Harper .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Tom Karsch .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version)
Marty Kearns .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Jeffrey Koep .... special thanks: University of Nevada Las Vegas (2004 alternate version) (as Jeffrey Koep Ph.D.)
Laneesa Lanier .... special thanks: University of Nevada Las Vegas (2004 alternate version)
Francisco Menéndez .... special thanks: UNLV Dept. of Film (2004 alternate version) (as Francisco Menendez)
John Novacek .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Kevin Orrock .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Brian Peterson .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Justin Pettigrew .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version)
Susan Ryan .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version) (as Susan K. Ryan)
David Schmoeller .... special thanks: UNLV Dept. of Film (2004 alternate version)
Charles Tabesh .... special thanks: Turner Entertainment Networks (2004 alternate version)
Morgan Tegtow .... special thanks: University of Nevada Las Vegas (2004 alternate version)
Jennifer Vaughan .... special thanks: University of Nevada Las Vegas (2004 alternate version)
Hart L. Wegner .... special thanks: UNLV Dept. of Film (2004 alternate version)
Peter Wentzel .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Karin Wright .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
Kevin Yates .... special thanks (2004 alternate version)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
84 min (2004 alternate version)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:TV-G (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Only one copy of the film is known to have survived. It was long thought lost before being located in Howard Hughes' film collection after his death. The film was restored and preserved by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas film department. The restored copy is frequently shown on Turner Classic Movies in the United States.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
[McQuigg ducks into a doorway when one of Scari's henchmen shoots at but purposely misses him. Scarsi emerges from behind the door]
Nick Scarsi:Hello, Mac.
Police Captain James McQuigg:Hello, Nick.
Nick Scarsi:Take a tip, Mac... change your racket.
Police Captain James McQuigg:I like my racket... and I haven't shot yet.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Remade as The Racket (1951)See more »

FAQ

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
A Tad Too Early, 8 July 2012
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

The Racket proved me wrong about a certain assumption I had always maintained that gangster films came really alive once sound came in because the snappy dialog of a Cagney, Bogart, or Robinson film was integral to the success. This film could hold its own with any of the sound films of the genre.

It originated on Broadway as a three act play all taking place in a police station that is captained by Thomas Meighan who is a doggedly honest cop in a city that is systemically corrupt. It's gotten real personal between Meighan and gangland boss Louis Wolheim. Wolheim is a swaggering arrogant sort who's even got his superiors out of joint with him for his quick resort to violence. Wolheim is a misanthropic sort who does not like women, no gangster molls for him. He has a weakness though, his spoiled rotten younger brother George E. Stone who has fallen big time for torch singing Marie Prevost. All that brings Wolheim down eventually.

Seeing Prevost on top of an upright piano she is obviously basing her character on Helen Morgan. The Racket came to the screen a tad too early, some musical numbers would have been good and might have happened if the film had been done even a few months later. Maybe even Morgan herself might have done the part.

As for Meighan his character is clearly based on Lewis J. Valentine who was a model captain who during the Roaring Twenties maintained his honesty in a corrupt era. Eventually Fiorello LaGuardia made him New York City's police commissioner and he was probably the best that ever filled that job. But that was in the future.

Howard Hughes produced this for Paramount and when he took over RKO he remade it with Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan, and Lizabeth Scott. It's a film that I like very much so it was a double treat for me to see this version of the same story. I'd recommend seeing both back to back.

And The Racket was up for an Oscar for Best Picture in the year of the first ceremonies. It lost to another Paramount film Wings.

The Racket proves that silent films could make good gangster films.

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