Down 4,769 this week

SOS Coast Guard (1937)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Romance, Sci-Fi  |  28 August 1937 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.7/10 from 135 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 4 critic

A mad scientist tries to sell his formula for a dist integrating gas to foreign powers.


(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

IMDb Picks: May

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in May, sponsored by COVERGIRL.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 29 Nov 2011
a list of 139 titles
created 13 Sep 2012
a list of 294 titles
created 08 Sep 2013
list image
a list of 770 titles
created 23 Oct 2013
a list of 1161 titles
created 7 months ago

Related Items

Search for "SOS Coast Guard" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: SOS Coast Guard (1937)

SOS Coast Guard (1937) on IMDb 5.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of SOS Coast Guard.


Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Dick Tracy I (1937)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A master criminal called The Spider puts the famous detective's brother under a hypnotic spell and turns him against Dick.

Directors: Alan James, Ray Taylor
Stars: Ralph Byrd, Kay Hughes, Smiley Burnette
Fantasy | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

On the mystic island of Lemuria, the cult of Ubasti seek the Egyptian Princess Nadji to sacrifice so that their goddess Ossana, whose soul resides in Nadji's body, may be resurrected by ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Taylor
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Maria Alba, Clara Kimball Young
Action | Sci-Fi | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Flash and his friends return to planet Mongo for an antidote to the Purple Death. But Ming the Merciless has other plans for them...

Directors: Ford Beebe, Ray Taylor
Stars: Buster Crabbe, Carol Hughes, Charles Middleton
Certificate: Passed Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The masked hero leads a fighting force to fight a villian who plots the conquest of The Republic of Mexico.

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Reed Hadley, Sheila Darcy, William Corson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Hammond, owner of the town's stagecoach line and a leading citizen, is opposed to Idaho becoming a state, and kills Randolph Meredith, owner of the town's newspaper, for endorsing it. ... See full summary »

Directors: Spencer Gordon Bennet, Wallace Grissell
Stars: George J. Lewis, Linda Stirling, Lucien Littlefield
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The California-Yucatan Railroad, being built for the good of Mexico, is under siege by a gang of terrorists hoping to force its sale; no one can prove their connection to profiteer Marsden.... See full summary »

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Helen Christian, Reed Howes, Duncan Renaldo
Black Friday (1940)
Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Dr. Sovac transplants the brain of a gangster into his professor friend's body to save his life, but there is a side effect that causes a dangerous split personality.

Director: Arthur Lubin
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Stanley Ridges
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The US marine corps must battle a would-be world conqueror who uses electricity as a weapon.

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Lee Powell, Bruce Bennett, Eleanor Stewart


Complete credited cast:
Ralph Byrd ...
Maxine Doyle ...
Jean Norman
Richard Alexander ...
Lee Ford ...
Snapper McGee
Herbert Rawlinson ...
Cmdr. Boyle
John Picorri ...
G.A. Rackerby [Chs. 2-12]
Rabinisi - Boroff's Spokesman at Screening [Ch. 1]
Thomas Carr ...
Ens. Jim Kent [Ch. 1]
Carleton Young ...
Henchman Dodds [Ch. 4]
Allen Connor ...
Dick Norman
George Chesebro ...
L.H. Degado - Chief Thug [Ch. 5]
Ranny Weeks ...
Wies - Ambulance Orderly Thug [Ch. 4]


A 12-episode serial. The government of Marovania hires the wicked Boroff to manufacture a powerful gas that causes mass disintegration. Boroff is en route to Marovania with a boatload of arnatite to make the gas when his steamer runs aground off the California coast. Boroff soon commits a murder. The Coast Guard, led by Lt. Terry Kent, must hunt Boroff, figure out his plan and where the arnatite is, capture and dispose of any gas Boroff manages to make, and protect the safety of civilians, including Terry's special friend, ubiquitous reporter Jean Norman, and her chatty photographer, Snapper McGee. Aiding Boroff is his slave Thorg, a formidable giant. Kent must often use his fists. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


SUPER THRILLS! SEE disastrous shipwrecks...a mastodon of crime...the atom destroyer at work...a fight for life a mile in the air! SEE the undersea battle...behind the scenes with the G-Men...the exploding ring of death...and a thousand more sights! (original poster) See more »


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

28 August 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Guarda Costa Alerta  »

Box Office


$107,217 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(12 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Bela Lugosi's illness prevented him from finishing the 1936 Republic feature "House of a Thousand Candles," so he completed his one-picture Republic contract with this 12 chapter serial, his only screen role during the full two year horror ban. See more »


Lt. Terry Kent: You might as well surrender, Boroff. You can't get away from the Coast Guard.
See more »


Edited into SOS Coast Guard (1942) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Above-average Republic serial with strong hero/villain pairing and expert staging
14 April 2008 | by (Bronx, NY) – See all my reviews

SOS COAST GUARD (1937) never flags throughout its entire run of twelve chapters. Nearly every episode offers something new and different, be it a chase involving two cars and a motorcycle in one episode or one involving speedboats and tommy guns in the next. Most of it is filmed on location in all sorts of picturesque Southern California coastal sites. As the hero, Ralph Byrd (Republic's own Dick Tracy) seems to do a lot of his own stunts—on land and at sea. He clambers around rocks, flies a plane, goes out in boats, rides a motorcycle, runs around rooftops, jumps off of them and when he has to fight, he plunges right in, getting into furious scraps with a host of different henchmen. And it's never the typical movie fight in which opponents trade telegraphed punches. It's pummeling, tussling, shoving, grabbing, rolling, kicking—messy, like a real fight.

The hero and villain (Bela Lugosi) are well matched. They're both smart and proactive. The villain's always one step ahead—as it's gotta be for a serial to last 12 chapters—but Byrd is no dope and he catches up pretty quickly. The villain uses lots of henchmen, divided into different teams for different tasks, so Byrd's not fighting the same bad guys in every episode. Also, unlike most serial heroes, Byrd's not afraid to call in police or Coast Guard backup. One great scene has the henchmen staking out a lab where a scientist is trying to analyze the villain's disintegrating gas so he can find a method to counteract it. Byrd's got several policemen protecting the lab. The lead henchman comes up with a clever plan to get Byrd out of the way, find a ruse to get past the police, get into the lab, kidnap the scientist and get him out without arousing the cops' suspicions. Usually, scenes like this rely on wild coincidences or highly improbable circumstances, but the plan used here actually makes sense and one has to give the bad guys credit for using their heads. It makes the whole thing so much more dramatically interesting when the hero faces genuine challenges.

Bela Lugosi plays the villain, Boroff, a criminal mastermind trying to develop disintegrating gas to sell to foreign powers for use in the coming war. Lugosi plays it straight, without any of his usual over-the-top mannerisms, and he's very effective. He's well supported by the actors playing his men, who look and move like actual thugs and not pretty boys from Central Casting.

If I have any complaint it's that the idiot comic relief, inept photographer "Snapper" McGee, gets way too much screen time and is the only element that actually slows the serial down. Also, some of the cliffhanger endings are a little on the cheating side. In one ending, Byrd ducks into the cockpit of his plane as a water tower falls on top of him. At the beginning of the next episode, it shows that he escaped injury—by ducking into the cockpit of his plane! Not exactly worth waiting a week for. This actually doesn't bother me because the rest of the story is so filled with action and thrills that the cliffhanger endings really don't matter much.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss SOS Coast Guard (1937) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: