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Lady Killer (1933)

 -  Comedy | Crime  -  9 December 1933 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 989 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 12 critic

A former gangster makes it big in Hollywood, but his old life catches up with him.

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(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Dan
...
Myra
...
Lois
Leslie Fenton ...
Duke
...
Spade (as Douglas Dumbrille)
Russell Hopton ...
Smiley
Raymond Hatton ...
Pete
Henry O'Neill ...
Ramick
Robert Elliott ...
Brannigan
Marjorie Gateson ...
Mrs. Marley
Willard Robertson ...
Detective Conroy
William B. Davidson ...
Director Williams (as William Davidson)
Douglas Cosgrove ...
Detective Jones
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Storyline

When a movie theater usher is fired, he takes up with criminals and finds himself quite adept at various illegal activities. Eventually though, the police catch up with him, and he runs to hide out in Los Angeles. There he stumbles into the movie business and soon rises to stardom. He has gone straight, but his newfound success arouses the interest of his old criminal associates, who are not above blackmail... Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Is Hollywood howling ! at this inside story of The Screen Idol Who Threw -?- -?- -?- Out Of His -?- -?- -?- On Her -?- ! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

9 December 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Finger Man  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Both George Blackwood as "Escort" and John Marsden as "Kendall" are listed in studio records/casting call lists, but they did not appear or were not identifiable in the movie. A modern source lists Sam Ash as "Hood,' but that role was played by Lew Harvey. See more »

Goofs

When Cagney's character asks film reviewer "Mr. Blair" into the men's room at The Cocoanut Grove to "discuss" his latest review, all of the stall doors are closed. After Cagney forces him to eat his review, the third stall door is open (no one enters or exits the room during this scene). See more »

Quotes

Lois Underwood: How long have you been in the business?
Dan Quigley: Four days... which just about makes me a supervisor.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood: The Great Stars (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Dancing with Tears in My Eyes
(1930) (uncredited)
Music by Joseph A. Burke
Played during the restaurant scene where the studio representative spots Dan
See more »

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User Reviews

 
early Cagney that takes a different from expected direction
6 September 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Roy del Ruth directed this early pre-code Cagney film, "Lady Killer" from 1933, also starring Mae Clarke, Margaret Lindsay, and Douglas Dumbrille.

Cagney plays Dan Quigley, a movie usher who, after he's fired, find a woman's (Mae Clarke) purse. He tries to catch her but can't. So he goes to her house and returns it. She's Myra Gale, and she invites him in for a drink. Turns out some men are at her place gambling, so Dan joins them and loses $50. As he's leaving, he sees another man coming up the stairs with a purse. Dan says he's related to Myra and will return it. When Myra sees him at the door, she tries to shut it but he forces his way in, goes into the back room and demands his money back. Then he offers to expand the operation so they can all make money. The guys agree.

Soon the dough comes rolling in, and the gang go to a society woman's house, where Dan pretends to have had an accident. He's carried into the house and cases the joint. The ambulance (his cohorts) picks him up and takes him to the hospital. Then they rob the house. Unfortunately they do it the same day, and soon the cops are onto the gang. They all take off, and Dan is picked up in LA on a New York warrant. When he asks Myra to bring him his money so he can post bail, she splits with the money, leaving Dan to fend for himself. He's finally released due to lack of evidence.

After the police threaten to arrest him as a vagrant, Dan finds a job as a film extra. He and a friend write dozens and dozens of fan letters and the studio notices, and he becomes a film star! He falls for fellow film star Lois Underwood, but runs afoul of the old gang. Now that he's making good, they hold his bad deeds over his head and want help casing Hollywood mansions.

Interesting film with lots going on in something like 76 minutes. Cagney is terrific, and he and Mae share an in joke when she reads the fruits grown in California, one of which is "grapefruit." We see a bit of behind the scenes movie making. Also, "Lady Killer" has some noirish touches, though this is a decade or so before noir.

Fun film with a nice mix of humor and drama carried by Cagney's strong performance, ably assisted by Clarke and Lindsay.


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