7.2/10
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14 user 10 critic

Heat Lightning (1934)

Unrated | | Drama | 3 March 1934 (USA)
In the Mohave Desert, Olga runs a gas station, lunch counter, and auto camp with her younger sister Myra. In a 24-hour period, Olga must deal with Myra's desire to go to a town dance with a... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(from the original play by), (from the original play by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Aline MacMahon ...
...
Myra
...
George
...
Jeff
...
Mrs. Tifton
...
Frank
Ruth Donnelly ...
Mrs. Ashton-Ashley
Theodore Newton ...
Steve Laird
Willard Robertson ...
Everett Marshall
Harry C. Bradley ...
'Popsy' - a Businessman
James Durkin ...
The Sheriff
...
Gladys - the Wife
...
Herbert - the Husband
Muriel Evans ...
Blonde Cutie
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Storyline

In the Mohave Desert, Olga runs a gas station, lunch counter, and auto camp with her younger sister Myra. In a 24-hour period, Olga must deal with Myra's desire to go to a town dance with a cad, the appearance by happenstance of George, an old boyfriend whose conduct is never above suspicion, and the overnight presence of two women recently divorced in Reno, who, with a chauffeur, are carrying valuable jewels. George gets wind of the jewels and plays with Olga's heartstrings to set up a robbery. Myra arranges to sneak off with her beau. It's hot, and the heat lightening is crackling on the horizon. Is Olga's life of peace and hard work in the desert about to change for the worse? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"I Just Killed A Rat"

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 March 1934 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Condemned by the Catholic Legion of Decency just before it changed its name to the National Legion of Decency in April, 1934. See more »

Quotes

George: Want another barbequed sandwich?
Jeff: I can hear the warden ask if I have any last words before they turn on the heat and you ask if I want another barbequed sandwich?
See more »

Connections

Version of Highway West (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Blowsy character-driven piece with some sharp dialogue...though it should have been grittier
15 March 2010 | by (las vegas, nv) – See all my reviews

Interesting drama which bristles with pungent, often very amusing dialogue. Two sisters (a homely, bossy man-hater and a restless younger beauty who likes to kick up her heels) battle amongst themselves while running a filling station/diner/motel in the California desert; a pair of casual-acting bank robbers stop in one afternoon on their way to the border, one of whom knows the elder sister very well. Adaptation of Leon Abrams and George Abbott's play ran into trouble with the Catholic Legion of Decency in 1934--one presumes over the frank talk and implications of man-woman intimacy--yet the most surprising thing about this piece is the fact Aline MacMahon's plain, resentful Olga has a romantic past at all! Possibly conceived at one point as a lesbian, the character of Olga (who trades in her head-bandanna and dungarees for make-up and a frilly dress) is the story's central focus, and yet she doesn't emerge as a convincing, fully thought-out creation. The material goes noticeably soft at the halfway mark to accommodate Olga's actions, making the censorship stories even more ridiculous in hindsight. Still, the film has a quick pace and a lively cast, colorful patter between the guests, and a satisfying finish. **1/2 from ****


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