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20,000 Years in Sing Sing (1932)

Unrated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 24 December 1932 (USA)
Brash hoodlum Tom Connors enters Sing Sing cocksure of himself and disrespectful toward authority, but his tough but compassionate warden changes him.

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(book) (as Warden Lewis E. Lawes), (screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

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Storyline

Tom Connors is sentenced to Sing Sing believing his influential friends will soon have him out on parole. A trouble maker, he gets ninety days in solitary and no parole. His girlfriend Fay is injured and Warden Long lets Tom visit her on his honor to return. During a fight with mobster Joe Finn Fay shoots Finn, Tom jumps out the window and is blamed for the death. He gives himself up but is sentenced to the electric chair. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

MEN without WOMEN...MEN without HOPE! smash their lives to pieces against their STEEL CHAINS! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

24 December 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Twenty Thousand Years in Sing Sing  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although the film was never considered for any film awards, it received overwhelmingly positive reviews from film critics and audiences alike. See more »

Goofs

Another film where a silencer is shown being used on a revolver. Silencers (or suppressors) do not work on revolvers because of the gap between the cylinder and the barrel of the gun. See more »

Quotes

The Warden - Paul Long: One of these days you'll learn, Connors, that no man has a spot in this world, except in relation to the people around him. That, you've got to be useful to live.
Tommy Connors: Save that for Sunday, Warden. And let me pass the plate.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Spirit of Independence
(1912) (uncredited)
Music by Abe Holzmann
Played during the baseball and marching montage
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User Reviews

 
Tragedy.
18 August 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This movie may have been released decades ago but its theme resonates today. Although the story is presented in a stagy and melodramatic manner, that in no way negates its power as a tragedy. The movie depicts the wasting of human potential. It's about pent up anger that distorts one's conduct. It's about the institutionalization and dehumanization of the individual. The social message is clear: anyone who winds up in prison is doomed. The principal character, Tommy O'Connor, played by Spencer Tracy, symbolizes all the troubled, angry, alienated and damaged people for whom the only solution is incarceration. Betty Davis plays his loyal girlfriend. Yet, as the movie so aptly shows, even someone deemed incorrigible is capable of acting responsibly and even honorably if treated with compassion. Tracy gives a convincing performance as a cynical and hard-bitten gangster who redeems himself, but at a high cost. To find out what that high cost entails, watch the movie.


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