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Bunker Bean (1936)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance | 26 June 1936 (USA)
Bunker Bean, a meek office clerk, has grandiose dreams but seems destined to remain forever in his lowly station. He seeks out the help of a fortune- teller, who tells him he is the ... See full summary »


(by), (screen play) (as Edmund North) | 4 more credits »


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Complete credited cast:
Owen Davis Jr. ...
Louise Latimer ...
Robert McWade ...
J.C. Kent
Jessie Ralph ...
Rosie Kelly
Professor Ed Balthazer
Edward J. Nugent ...
Mr. Glab (as Edward Nugent)
Mrs. Dorothy Kent
Ferdinand Gottschalk ...
Dr. Meyerhauser
Leonard Carey ...
Kent's Butler
Russell Hicks ...
A.C. Jones
Sibyl Harris ...
Countess Cassandra


Bunker Bean, a meek office clerk, has grandiose dreams but seems destined to remain forever in his lowly station. He seeks out the help of a fortune- teller, who tells him he is the reincarnation of Napoleon and also of an Egyptian Pharaoh. Armed with his new sense of power, Bunker proceeds to win the hand of his boss' daughter and also outwits her cutthroat father in a business deal. Now a winner, Bean suddenly learns that the crystal ball-gazer was a phony, and that he found success not through any aristocratic bloodlines but through sheer spunk and belief in his own abilities. Written by Dan Navarro <daneldorado@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Romance






Release Date:

26 June 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El oficinista y la bola de cristal  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The original play opened in New York on 2 October 1916. See more »


Grandmother: [Bunker Bean gets a high head about himself and starts spanking his own bosses daughter. Well, Mr. Kent and his wife come in and start pampering her scolding him saying they had never struck her in her life! And Jessie ralph's character, the grandmother, comes up to him after they leave laughing and she says] "Son you'll get into heaven for this!"
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Version of His Majesty, Bunker Bean (1925) See more »

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User Reviews

The Worm Turns
2 November 2006 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

This 1936 programmer starring Owen Davis, Jr. as Bunker Bean shows signs of having been a Douglas Fairbanks Sr. sort of show when it was originally produced for the New York stage in the mid Teens. Bunker Bean, a downtrodden clerk, finds his nerve and self confidence at the hands of some spiritualist swindlers. It is a cute idea and there are several lovely moments, but Davis' performance at the beginning of the movie is so low-key and depressing that it stops the movie from rising much above average. Later on, he seems to turn into Rudy Vallee. The bravura performance that Fairbanks would have given it hangs over the entire story.

Happily, Davis is not the whole show. Robert McWade gives a good turn as his irascible, predatory boss, Hedda Hopper is fine as McWade's annoying wife and, for completists, Lucille Ball has a credited role as a gum-chewing receptionist. But her performance -- indeed the performances of all the employees shown in this movie seem completely indifferent to their jobs and all the bosses seem to think that every good deal must involve a large measure of cheating. This limited range of character types threaten to sink the movie, but some good writing manages to make the entire thing, if not outstanding, amusing.

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