IMDb > Hallelujah I'm a Bum (1933)
Hallelujah I'm a Bum
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Hallelujah I'm a Bum (1933) More at IMDbPro »

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Ben Hecht (original story)
S.N. Behrman (adaptation)
View company contact information for Hallelujah I'm a Bum on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 February 1933 (USA) See more »
The First Picture Ever Done in "Rhythmic Dialogue!" (original poster) See more »
A New York tramp (Jolson) falls in love with the mayor's amnesiac girlfriend after rescuing her from a suicide attempt | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
An early 'talking' (and singing) film which may still have appeal for film lovers today. See more (25 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Al Jolson ... Bumper

Madge Evans ... June Marcher

Frank Morgan ... Mayor John Hastings

Harry Langdon ... Egghead

Chester Conklin ... Sunday
Tyler Brooke ... Mayor's Secretary
Tammany Young ... Orlando
Bert Roach ... John
Edgar Connor ... Acorn
Dorothea Wolbert ... Apple Mary
Louise Carver ... Ma Sunday
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ernie Adams ... Man Thrown out of Apartment Building (uncredited)
Vince Barnett ... Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
Ted Billings ... Bum with Violin (uncredited)
Heinie Conklin ... Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) (unconfirmed)

Gino Corrado ... Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
John George ... Bum (uncredited)
Harold Goodwin ... Len (uncredited)
Lorenz Hart ... Bank Teller (uncredited)
Robert Homans ... Cop (uncredited)
Burr McIntosh ... Dignitary at Laying of Cornerstone (uncredited)
William H. O'Brien ... Waiter (uncredited)
Victor Potel ... The General (uncredited)
Richard Rodgers ... Photograper's Assistant (uncredited)
Bodil Rosing ... Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
Sidney Skolsky ... Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
Billy West ... Bum (uncredited)

Directed by
Lewis Milestone 
Writing credits
Ben Hecht (original story)

S.N. Behrman (adaptation)

Produced by
Joseph M. Schenck .... executive producer
Original Music by
Alfred Newman (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Lucien N. Andriot  (as Lucien Andriot)
Film Editing by
Duncan Mansfield  (as W. Duncan Mansfield)
Art Direction by
Richard Day 
Costume Design by
Milo Anderson 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Nate Watt .... assistant director
Sound Department
Oscar Lagerstrom .... sound
Music Department
Alfred Newman .... musical director
Ray Heindorf .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Other crew
V.L. McFadden .... technical director
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Lazy Bones" - USA (reissue title)
"The Heart of New York" - USA (reissue title)
See more »
82 min | USA:68 min (re-release)
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Did You Know?

Roland Young was originally cast as Mayor Hastings and filmed almost all the character's scenes, but he fell ill and had to be replaced by Frank Morgan.See more »
Crew or equipment visible: A cameraman's arm is reflected in the partially opened window of the Mayor's limousine when the Mayor meets Bumper at the casino.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Going Hollywood: The '30s (1984)See more »
I Gotta Get Back to New YorkSee more »


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18 out of 21 people found the following review useful.
An early 'talking' (and singing) film which may still have appeal for film lovers today., 14 April 2003
Author: marxi from Louisville, Kentucky

A bum named Bumper and his pals named Acorn and Egghead live a pleasant life in New York with a philosophy that it is better to be a bum than to work for a living. They just happen to be acquaintances with the mayor of New York who is a bit of a playboy.

When the mayor and his lady friend have a quarrel, she despairs and jumps off a bridge to end her life. Bumper happens to see her jump and rescues her from the river. The result of her trauma is that she has temporary amnesia, and she falls in love with Bumper while he is taking care of her.

This is a charming film, with many attributes that make it commendable. "Hallelujah, I'm a Bum" is first and foremost a musical with some drama and comedy added in. Al Jolson's voice and singing are simply wonderful and this movie is good enough to see for the songs alone. The songs are snappy and cheery and if you'd like to be introduced to the famous Al Jolson, this is a good choice. There is also quite a bit of rhythm and rhyme to much of the dialogue in the film which is unique and fascinating. The credits on the film for 'Songs and Musical Dialogue' go to one of the most famous teams of songwriters in the history of film, Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart. Their musical brilliance is in evidence in this film.

The cinematography is very good, and it takes us back to 1933 with a 'feel' for what the atmostphere would have been to be bum living in a park in New York, albeit a very happy go lucky bum in a very idealistically happy world. Lewis Milestone, who directed the film is an extremely well known director from the 1930's and 1940's and his skill is evident here.

Al Jolson is a great fit for his role in this movie as the good natured bum, Bumper. His friends Egghead (Harry Langdon) and Acorn (Edgar Connor) are also delightfully cast; these two actors light up the screen anytime they are present. Harry Morgan is terrific as the mayor (He would later be immortalized as the wizard in 1939 in "The Wizard of Oz." Madge Evans is beautiful as the rejected girl friend of the mayor.

This movie is just plain fun to watch and to listen to. I think you might be surprised to find out that this is one of the early 'talking films' which may still have appeal for many film lovers today. There is something timeless about "Hallelujah, I'm a Bum" which makes it well worth watching. I give it a 9/10.

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