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Palooka (1934)

Unrated | | Comedy, Music | 26 January 1934 (USA)
Knobby discovers young hunk Palooka and trains him to fight the reigning champ, also drunken sot, Al McSwatt.

Director:

Writers:

(comic strip creator), (screen play) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Mayme Palooka
...
Pete Palooka
...
...
Al McSwatt
...
Trixie
Franklyn Ardell ...
Doc Wise
Tom Dugan ...
Whitey
Louise Beavers ...
Crystal
Fred 'Snowflake' Toones ...
Smokey (as Snowflake)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gus Arnheim ...
Orchestra Bandleader
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Storyline

Mayme walks out on her husband, Pete Palooka, after he wins the middleweight championship and shows his proclivity for life in the fast lane. She raises son Joe on a farm, by herself. When slippery fight manager Knobby Walsh happens to discover Joe's surprising punching power, he signs him. With current champion Al McSwatt needing an easy opponent, Walsh gets Joe the fight. Palooka steals the championship( and girlfriend Nina Madero) from McSwatt when McSwatt shows up for the fight drunk. Now it's Joe's turn to live in the fast lane, winning fights(that are set ups by Walsh) and drinking hard with vamp Nina. However, when McSwatt and his manager trick Joe into a rematch, it's time to test his real boxing talent. Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Music

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 January 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Joe Palooka  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

United Artists/Reliance production number 8200. See more »

Quotes

Doc Wise: He's no more a champ than you're an Indian.
Knobby Walsh: I am an Indian; and my name is Sittin' Pretty.
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Joe Palooka Story (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

Like Me a Little Bit Less (Love Me a Little Bit More)
(1933) (uncredited)
Music by Burton Lane
Lyrics by Harold Adamson
Sung and danced to by Lupe Velez at the Paradise nightclub
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Palooka Family Values
6 February 2015 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

This feature length film based on Ham Fisher's comic strip Joe Palooka has Stu Erwin cast as quite a different Palooka than Fisher created. In the strip Joe Palooka is a clean living Jack Armstrong/Frank Merriwell type, defender of the weak and downtrodden when he's not in the ring. Erwin is clean living all right but no one would ever cast him as a Jack Armstrong.

Stu is the son of an Armstrong though, Robert Armstrong plays Pete Palooka his dad, former champion who could not lay off the booze and the women. That caused a split with his wife show girl Marjorie Rambeau and she quit the stage and raised Erwin out in the country on a farm with lots of clean living and a wholesome girl played by Mary Carlisle wants to marry him.

But a chance encounter with fight manager Knobby Walsh played by the one and only Jimmy Durante has Erwin convinced to follow his dad into the boxing game. And another fluke has him beating champion William Cagney and not only inheriting his title but also his girlfriend Lupe Velez.

Now that's one cast of colorful players that should alone make you want to see this film. Even if it's not what creator Ham Fisher had in mind Palooka is still a nice film with a few sly innuendos that those who love those before the Code films will appreciate.

Written into the film is Jimmy Durante in a drunken stupor singing one of his famous songs Inka-Dinka-Doo. And there's nothing like the come hither glance that only Lupe Velez can give to any man. That woman could seduce Truman Capote.

Not a great one as far as boxing films are concerned but still some fine entertainment.


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