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The Finger Points (1931)

 -  Crime | Drama | Thriller  -  11 April 1931 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 189 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 3 critic

Lee is a fresh young kid from the South when he gets a job with The Press. His first assignment on gangsters gets his name in the paper, the police on a raid and Lee in the hospital. He ... See full summary »

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Title: The Finger Points (1931)

The Finger Points (1931) on IMDb 6.2/10

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Complete credited cast:
Robert Elliott ...
Oscar Apfel ...
Managing Editor Ellis Wheeler
Robert Gleckler ...
Larry Haynes, Sphinx Club Manager
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Noel Madison ...
Larry Hayes (scenes deleted)


Lee is a fresh young kid from the South when he gets a job with The Press. His first assignment on gangsters gets his name in the paper, the police on a raid and Lee in the hospital. He quickly finds that it is everyone for himself, so he goes into the business of not reporting for a fee. He quickly learns to shake down the gangsters, and with the paper behind him, they leave Lee alone. But the girl he is crazy for will only trade a ring for his going straight. Written by Tony Fontana <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Thriller






Release Date:

11 April 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Finger Points  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film is based on Chicago Tribune reporter Jake Lingle, who was shot and killed the day before he was to meet with federal agents in connection with Al Capone's finances. Lingle was on Capone's payroll. See more »


Funeral March (Marche Funèbre)
from "Sonata in Bb-, Op.35 No.2"
Music by Frédéric Chopin
Played after Lee's death
See more »

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User Reviews

"In this blood-soaked town, it's kill or be killed!"
27 June 2003 | by See all my reviews

Socially-conscious Warners/First National delivered a corker of a newspaper melodrama in 1931, but this wasn't it: It was "Five Star Final." This fast-moving but muddled early talkie shares the crowded city desk with editors yelling "stop the presses!" and a cursory examination of the process of putting out a news daily. But here, the paper is genuinely excellent and socially responsible, not a muckraking tabloid. And the idealistic cub reporter (Barthelmess, who looks far too old to be a cub reporter) turns rotten awfully quickly, becoming a yes-man to a mobster (Gable in a typical early role, and effortlessly natural and likeable). It drains audience sympathy for our hero, and we don't see why his journalistically wise, sob-sister colleague (Wray, who looks too young to have Seen It All) would stick around with him, or take him back without his having really reformed. The motivations are confused throughout, and when our hero meets an unhappy fate, the movie seems to mourn him, but we don't. It's like a morality tale without a clear moral. Warners got better at its social realism quickly, and Barthelmess went from this comparative potboiler to the far more interesting "Cabin in the Cotton" -- again playing an idealistic sap, albeit one with more consistency.

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