6.1/10
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Angels Wash Their Faces (1939)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 26 August 1939 (USA)
A young man just released from a reformatory moves to a new neighborhood with his sister, intending to start a new life. However, he gets mixed up with the local mob boss and corrupt ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Billy Halop ...
Billy Shafter
Bernard Punsly ...
Sleepy Arkelian (as Bernard Punsley)
...
Leo Finnegan
...
Huntz
Gabriel Dell ...
Luigi
...
Bernie
...
Pat Remson
...
Peggy Finnegan
...
Gabe Ryan
Henry O'Neill ...
Remson Sr.
...
Martino
...
Mayor Dooley
...
Kroner
Dick Rich ...
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Storyline

A young man just released from a reformatory moves to a new neighborhood with his sister, intending to start a new life. However, he gets mixed up with the local mob boss and corrupt politicians and soon finds himself being framed for an arson and murder he didn't commit. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 August 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Battle of City Hall  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Warner Bros. Studios began to tire of the boys' antics during production of "Angels Wash Their Faces." Among their pranks: throwing a lit firecracker in Humphrey Bogart's dressing room, painting obscene murals on the office walls, and setting off fire sprinklers in the wardrobe department. The studio hired a former football player, Russ Saunders, in hopes of taming their unruly sextet. He ultimately had to use a fire hose on them. Ultimately the studio became fed up and dropped their contract. See more »

Quotes

Billy Shafter: Listen, Mr. Remson, I'm supposed to be mayor for one week. I know its all a joke and I haven't got any real power. But, why don't you give us kids a break? You grown-ups have been doing things your way and you've got everything all balled up. Well, we're going to handle this our way. Come on kids, let's organize!
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Connections

Followed by Give Us Wings (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

A-Tisket A-Tasket
Traditional children's song
Played by an organ grinder and whistled by Jackie Searl when the boys encounter Alfred Goonplatz
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Some Arcane Laws Put To Good Use
26 August 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Although Ronald Reagan and Ann Sheridan are the romantic leads here, the film really belongs to the Dead End Kids. Angels Wash Their Faces is NOT a sequel to Angels With Dirty Faces, it doesn't come close to that classic. Still it's an enjoyable film.

The Dead End Kids are joined by Frankie Thomas and Bonita Granville who Warner Brothers had been using in their Nancy Drew series. In those films Granville was the lead and poor Thomas was her earnest boyfriend who she got involved in all of her cases. Here Thomas is the lead and Granville his romantic interest and would you believe, Leo Gorcey's sister. That's nothing, in one of the Bowery Boy features Gorcey got a young Ava Gardner as his sister.

There's been a rash of fires in the neighborhood, somebody's got a nice little arson racket going. The crooks try to pin this on Frankie Thomas who's a new kid moved into the neighborhood with his sister Ann Sheridan. Ronald Reagan as the Assistant District Attorney reluctantly prosecutes.

What happens then is Dead End Kid leader Billy Halop gets himself elected boy mayor of the city and uses the power of office quite creatively to help Thomas and find the arsonists. Some arcane laws which are still on the books turn out to be of real value.

Best in the cast is Frankie Thomas who's quite appealing as the kid in trouble and Bernard Nedell as the slick crook who gets quite a comeuppance from the Dead End Kids.

Fans of the Kids will like this one.


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