Scarface (1932)

Passed  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  9 April 1932 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 18,732 users  
Reviews: 276 user | 64 critic

An ambitious and near insanely violent gangster climbs the ladder of success in the mob, but his weaknesses prove to be his downfall.


(novel), (screen story), 8 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Karen Morley ...
Osgood Perkins ...
C. Henry Gordon ...
Inspector Guarino
Vince Barnett ...
Tom Gaffney
Purnell Pratt ...
Managing Editor
Inez Palange ...
Tony's Mother
Detective Chief


Johnny Lovo rises to the head of the bootlegging crime syndicate on the south side of Chicago following the murder of former head, Big Louis Costillo. Johnny contracted Big Louis' bodyguard, Tony Camonte, to make the hit on his boss. Tony becomes Johnny's second in command. Johnny is not averse to killing anyone who gets in his and Johnny's way. As Tony is thinking bigger than Johnny and is not afraid of anyone or anything, Tony increasingly makes decisions on his own instead of following Johnny's orders, especially in not treading on the north side run by an Irish gang led by a man named O'Hara, of whom Johnny is afraid. Tony's murder spree increases, he taking out anyone who stands in his and Johnny's way of absolute control on the south side, and in Tony's view absolute control of the entire city. Tony's actions place an unspoken strain between Tony and Johnny to the point of the two knowing that they can't exist in their idealized world with the other. Tony's ultimate downfall may... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

police | mob | murder | gangster | beer | See All (152) »


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

9 April 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Scarface, the Shame of the Nation  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Al Capone was rumored to have liked the film so much that he had his own copy of it. See more »


The scene Tony pushes and punches the man who refuses to obey Johnny Lovo in First Ward Social Club, it's clearly seen that Tony actually punches the man's palm. See more »


Francesca 'Cesca' Camonte: You're a butcher! That's what you are! You're a butcher!
See more »

Crazy Credits

"This picture is an indictment of gang rule in America and of the callous indifference of the government to this constantly increasing menace to our safety and our liberty. Every incident in this picture is the reproduction of an actual occurence, and the purpose of this picture is to demand of the government: "What are you going to do about it?". The government is your government. What are YOU going to do about it? See more »


Remade as Atishbaz (1990) See more »


Some of These Days
Written by Shelton Brooks
Played by Gus Arnheim and His Orchestra
Danced to by Ann Dvorak and Warner Richmond, Karen Morley and Paul Muni and other couples
See more »

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User Reviews

Ugly and brilliant
15 October 2001 | by See all my reviews

Rat-rat-a-tat goes Hawks's direction, opening and closing with a bang, and what's in between is pretty sensational, too. Muni, who could be an awful ham, is just right here -- slick and sexy and a little stupid, a hot-tempered paisano unable to control his ambitions or passions. The incest subplot, never overtly stated but always close to the surface, makes the movie seem startlingly modern. And the dialogue goes snap, snap, snap. The only place the movie stumbles is in a civics-lesson scene where the self-important newspaper editor spells out exactly what's wrong with the criminal justice system of 1932 and delivers his dull speech straight to the camera, like a high school lecture. It's the briefest of lulls in one of the most exciting early talkies, and certainly one of the greatest of all gangster flicks.

34 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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