Judge Priest (1934)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  28 September 1934 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,306 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 10 critic

Judge Priest, a proud Confederate veteran, uses common sense and considerable humanity to dispense justice in a small town in the Post-Bellum Kentucky.



(based on: character of "Judge Priest"), (screen play), 1 more credit »
0Check in

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive




Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A Louisiana con man enters his steamboat into a winner-take-all race with a rival while trying to find a witness to free his nephew, about to be hung for murder.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Will Rogers, Anne Shirley, Irvin S. Cobb
Doctor Bull (1933)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Doc Bull, a no-nonsense country doctor who has served his community for decades, fights small-town prejudice and provincialism in several crises.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Will Rogers, Marian Nixon, Vera Allen
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The story of Dr. Samuel Mudd, who was imprisoned after innocently treating President Lincoln's assassin in 1865.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Warner Baxter, Gloria Stuart, Claude Gillingwater
Comedy | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charles Winninger, Arleen Whelan, John Russell
Certificate: Passed Adventure | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A dozen British soldiers, lost in a Mesopotamian desert during world war I, are menaced by unseen Arab enemies.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Victor McLaglen, Boris Karloff, Wallace Ford
Tobacco Road (1941)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Shiftless Jeeter Lester and his family of hillbilly stereotypes live in a rural backwater where their ancestors were once wealthy planters. Their slapstick existence is threatened by a ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charley Grapewin, Gene Tierney, Marjorie Rambeau
3 Bad Men (1926)
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Three outlaws come to the aid of a young girl after her father is killed.

Director: John Ford
Stars: George O'Brien, Olive Borden, Lou Tellegen
The Informer (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In 1922, an Irish rebel informs on his friend, then feels doom closing in.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Victor McLaglen, Heather Angel, Preston Foster
The Fugitive (1947)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Anti--Catholic and anti-cleric policies in the Mexican state of Tabasco lead the revolutionary government to persecute the state's last remaining priest.

Directors: John Ford, Emilio Fernández
Stars: Henry Fonda, Dolores del Rio, Pedro Armendáriz
Certificate: Passed History | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

After witnessing the murder of his father by a renegade as a boy, the grown-up Brandon helps to realize his father's dream of a transcontinental railway.

Director: John Ford
Stars: George O'Brien, Madge Bellamy, Charles Edward Bull
Up the River (1930)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

When paroled trustee Steve and former inmate Judy who try to put their criminal lives behind them are blackmailed, two career criminals come to their rescue.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Claire Luce, Warren Hymer
Pilgrimage (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Director: John Ford
Stars: Henrietta Crosman, Heather Angel, Norman Foster


Complete credited cast:
Jerome Priest
Ellie May Gillespie
Henry B. Walthall ...
Rev. Ashby Brand
David Landau ...
Bob Gillis
Virginia Maydew
Roger Imhof ...
Frank Melton ...
Flem Talley
Sergeant Jimmy Bagby
Senator Horace Maydew
Brenda Fowler ...
Mrs. Caroline Priest
Francis Ford ...
Juror No. 12
Aunt Dilsey (as Hattie McDaniels)
Stepin Fetchit ...


Judge William "Billy" Priest lives in a very patriotic (Confederate) southern town. Priest plays a laid-back, widowed judge who helps uphold the law in his toughest court case yet. In the meantime, he plays matchmaker for his young nephew. Written by <marsattack@earthling.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Mellow as a mint julep and twice as refreshing. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

28 September 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El juez  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(copyright length)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Based on Irvin S. Cobb's character of 'Judge Priest'" was a compromise onscreen source credit. Fox wanted to use "Based on the Judge Priest Stories by Irwin S. Cobb," but Mr. Cobb objected because he had written over 70 stories, was still writing them, and the statement might inhibit future sales of them. See more »


[first lines]
Judge William 'Billy' Priest: Hear! Hear! Hear! Court's called to order!
See more »


Version of The Sun Shines Bright (1953) See more »


My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night
(1853) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Foster
Played during the opening and end credits, and often in the score
Also Sung by Hattie McDaniel, Melba Brown, Thelma Brown, Vera Brown,
Will Rogers and others
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Enjoyable classic film upon a good judge against the injustices in a small town
24 February 2006 | by See all my reviews

In spite of the bonfires war had finished however the ashes and sequels still remain.The war between the states-the Union and Confederacy-was over but its tragedies and comedies haunted every grown man's mind.Taken from the Irvin S. Cobb stories which after main title picture says the following :¨The events were swapped took deep root in my memory and are familiar ghost of my boyhood.There was one man ¨Down Yonder¨I came specially to admire for he seemed typical of the tolerance of that day and the wisdom of that almost vanished generation.I called Judge Priest and I tried to draw reasonably fair likeness of him and his neighbors and the town in which he lived¨.

The film deals a southern Judge(Will Rogers) with good humor ,common sense,jingoist and with a heart of gold who makes many goods deeds,helping to unfortunates and hapless and doing as matchmaker of his nephew(T.Brown) with a beautiful young(Anita Louise).The film is well set during the reconstruction although is eventually hampered by racist stereotypes on the black people characterizations.Biggest film are the musical duet among Will Rogers and Hattie McDaniel and the jokes about the spitting on the pot during trial court celebration. Besides appears Hattie McDaniel in her second greatest role of her career,the first was, of course,Mammy in ¨Gone with the wind¨,she is in a number of ways,superior to most of the white folk surrounding her.She was the first African-American to win an Academy Award.She became the first African-American to attend the Academy Award as a guest,not a servant. Musical direction is by Cryl Mockridge who along with Dudley Nichols are habituals in John Ford movies.A worst remake was realized by Ford's own in 1953¨The sun shines bright¨ with Charles Winninger with little success. Motion picture will like to cinema classics moviegoers

11 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
the objectionable confederacy NewtonFigg
Discuss Judge Priest (1934) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: