A popular high school valedictorian and star athlete becomes a pariah when it's discovered that his father is a former bootlegger.



(screenplay) (as Robert D. Andrews), (story) | 1 more credit »

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Complete credited cast:
Larry Kelly
Tim Kelly
Lucy Gilman ...
Julia Davis
Louise Lorimer ...
Mrs. Kelly
Tommy Wonder ...
Bill Davis
Judge Roger Davis
Mrs. Davis
School Principal (as Huntly Gordon)
Stevens - The Butler
District Attorney Edward Jameson
Jack Kennedy ...
Police Sergeant
Bobby Stone ...


Senior Larry Kelly has been chosen valedictorian and is looking forward with best friend Bill Davis to a West Point appointment. In addition, he is romantically involved with Molly Davis, Bill's sister. Larry's father, Tim 'Knuckles' Kelly, becomes reunited with his wife and son after a long absence. They buy a house in a well-to-do neighborhood next door to the Davis family, but when the local newspaper reveals that Tim is an ex-bootlegger, Judge Davis, a harsh disciplinarian, forbids his children to see Larry. Although many consider Larry a pariah, his closest friends and the principal remain loyal. When Bill accidentally runs over a bicyclist while driving Larry's car and a whiskey bottle is discovered in the back seat, Larry takes the blame for his friend. When the truth comes to light, everyone involved realizes Larry's character and integrity, and the two families become reconciled. Written by Gabe Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Yesterday CHEERED! Today SHUNNED!







Release Date:

16 November 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

En gangsters son  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film received its earliest documented telecasts in New York City Thursday 22 July 1948 on WCBS (Channel 2) and in Los Angeles Wednesday 15 March 1950 on KTSL (Channel 2). See more »


Referenced in Murder, My Sweet (1944) See more »


Blossoms in the Moonlight
Written by Edward J. Kay
Sung by Lucy Gilman
See more »

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User Reviews

Gangster's Boy was another okay B-movie from a teen Jackie Cooper
10 January 2015 | by (Baton Rouge, La.) – See all my reviews

This was another Monogram B-movie Jackie Cooper made around the late '30s when he was no longer a cute little boy but a teenager that no major studio knew what to do with. As the title implies, he's the son of a former bootlegger-who returns home after being away for awhile-which ostracizes him from much of the high school crowd-when they find out from the papers-except for his best friend, his girlfriend who's his best friend's sister, and the principal. Jackie's just glad to have his father back based on some of their banter though the mother is hesitant at first. The drama is a bit uneven since there's no confrontation between Cooper and his father about his revelation and a music score might have helped in selling the melodrama concerning some of the other dramatic events that happen later on. Still, Cooper was good at what he was given and the supporting cast was okay as well. So on that note, Gangster's Boy is worth a look. P.S. As a Chicago native, I was nicely surprised that player Lucy Gilman was born and died there and was a radio actress as a child.

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