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Bordertown (1935)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  23 January 1935 (USA)
7.3
Your rating:
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 919 users  
Reviews: 23 user | 7 critic

Johnny Ramirez rises from bouncer to partner in Charlie Roark's border town casino. Charlie's wife Marie loves Johnny, but Johnny loves society woman Dale. Marie kills her husband, making ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Archie L. Mayo)

Writers:

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

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Marie Roark
...
Dale Elwell
...
Charlie Roark
Robert Barrat ...
Padre
Soledad Jiménez ...
Mrs. Ramirez (as Soledad Jimenez)
Hobart Cavanaugh ...
Harry
Gavin Gordon ...
Brook Manville
William B. Davidson ...
Dr. Carter (as William Davidson)
Arthur Stone ...
Manuel Diego
Vivian Tobin ...
Mrs. Garner
Edit

Storyline

Johnny Ramirez rises from bouncer to partner in Charlie Roark's border town casino. Charlie's wife Marie loves Johnny, but Johnny loves society woman Dale. Marie kills her husband, making it look like suicide. She tells Johnny she committed murder for him and, still rejected, tells the police that she and Johnny murdered Charlie. She goes crazy in court and Johnny goes free. Dale runs from Johnny and dies in an auto crash. Johnny sells the casino. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

23 January 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Barreira  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Muni hired a Mexican man as chauffeur to study his accent and mannerisms in preparation for this role. See more »

Goofs

When Johnny shows Marie to her car, the shadow of the camera is visible on the car door. See more »

Connections

Version of They Drive by Night (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet Georgia Brown
(1925) (uncredited)
Music by Maceo Pinkard
Played when Roark is telling the story and as Johnny patrols the Silver Slipper
See more »

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User Reviews

 
To Hollywood, furriners is furriners

Paul Muni was an East European Jew, so naturally he was cast as a Hispanic Californian.

Well, heck, to name just one, Leo Carrillo, a native Hispanic Californian, was cast as everything from Greek to French to Italian to Latino, and so many other "ethnic" actors played various nationalities besides their own heritages.

Muni apparently wore dark makeup for this role, but it wasn't a stereotype; it was, in fact, a very sympathetic character.

Bette Davis never looked lovelier. For years, I have tried to spread my conspiracy theory that she was not made up, but made down, that she was, in fact, a very lovely lady and the Westmore family apparently had it in for her and put the make up on in such a way that her looks were coarsened, and she was aged long before her time.

She was such a great actress that her looks didn't matter, but she was very attractive and I find it a shame she wasn't allowed to show her natural beauty.

The female, though, who stole this movie, both in looks and in animated characterization, was Margaret Lindsay. She was absolutely fascinating in this role as spoiled rich girl, an almost good guy. In fact, she made this movie worth seeing.

The presence of a genuine Hispanic, Soledad Jiménez, gives one pause to wonder why more genuine Hispanics weren't cast in movies like this. She was just great.

The ending was rather puzzling, perhaps a sop to somebody's nativism, but the story was a good one, the acting was generally great, and all of that, with Archie Mayo's directing, make this one worthwhile.


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