Rocky Sullivan and Jerry Connolly were tough kids who grew up together in the toughest part of New York --- Hell's Kitchen. Early on, Rocky gets sent to reform school, where he learns how to be a first class criminal. Jerry, who had escaped from the law, goes straight and becomes a priest. As adults, they reunite in the old neighborhood: Jerry works with the kids who, like he and Rocky, could end up on either side of the law. Rocky has returned looking for a safe place to stay till he can get back into his old racketeering organization -- something that his old partner isn't anxious to have happen. Lots of rapid fire wisecracks, roughhousing and gunfire ensues. Written by
The saga of America's dirty faced kids... And the breaks that life won't give them!
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Did You Know?
The story was written by Rowland Brown
as a project for James Cagney
at Grand National Pictures, the independent studio Cagney had signed with in 1936 after winning a breach-of-contract suit against Warner Bros. The original plan had been for Brown to write the full script and direct the film, but when Warners won back Cagney's contract on appeal they bought Brown's story for Cagney but assigned John Wexley
and Warren Duff
to do the screenplay and Michael Curtiz
to direct. See more
Towards the end of the film, during the scene where Rocky is shooting it out with the police in the warehouse, watch the "concrete" pillar Rocky has taken cover behind. Seconds before a bullet impact appears on the pillar, a close up reveals a slight round indentation surrounded by a lighter coloring of paint, exactly where the bullet squib, which has been embedded in the pillar, explodes moments later. An immediate cut to Rocky's reaction has him bumping the pillar with his hands, at which point the entire "concrete" pillar wobbles slightly. See more
Jerry, As a Boy
William 'Rocky' Sullivan, as a boy
It's as dead as a door nail around here.
Jerry, As a Boy
Referenced in The Ministers
In My Merry Oldsmobile
Music by Gus Edwards
Lyrics by Vincent Bryan
Revised version sung a cappella by James Cagney
and Pat O'Brien See more