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Drunk Driving (1939) More at IMDbPro »


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Down 19% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Karl Kamb (story)
Karl Kamb (screenplay)
View company contact information for Drunk Driving on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
28 October 1939 (USA) See more »
In this Crime Does Not Pay series entry, John Jones is an up and coming businessman who drinks too much but denies he has a problem... See more » | Add synopsis »
Nominated for Oscar. See more »
User Reviews:
Crime Does NOT PAY! See more (5 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
Dick Purcell ... John Jones
Jo Ann Sayers ... Mrs. Jones
Richard Lane ... Rick
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Granville Bates ... Mr. Jenks (uncredited)
Edgar Dearing ... Second Cop (uncredited)

John Dilson ... Doctor (uncredited)
Sarah Edwards ... Motorist (uncredited)
Harrison Greene ... Refrigerator Customer (uncredited)
Robert Middlemass ... Inspector Doyle (uncredited)
Lee Phelps ... First Cop (uncredited)
William Tannen ... Ambulance Driver (uncredited)
Phillip Trent ... MGM Crime Reporter (uncredited)

Eddy Waller ... Slow Driving Motorist (uncredited)

Directed by
David Miller 
Writing credits
Karl Kamb (story)

Karl Kamb (screenplay)

Produced by
Jack Chertok .... producer
Cinematography by
Paul Vogel 
Film Editing by
Albert Akst 
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Crime Does Not Pay No. 25: Drunk Driving" - USA (series title)
See more »
22 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Crime Does NOT PAY!, 11 June 2001
Author: ( from Austin, TX

In this early example of an instructional film, we open on the stirring close-up of a police badge. Then, we hear the blare of sirens, and then we see a solemn expert who speaks to us about the dangers of drunk driving - and offers photographs to back up his word. Just as we prepare to swear off drinking for the rest of our lives, he offers this dramatic reconstruction, and it's flash-back time.

John Jones is a nice guy who works for a refrigerator firm. This is our first tip-off that he's not too bright. He's just landed a $20,000 contract, and the boss is sending him off to the east coast, to train for his upcoming management post. Elated by this news of his promotion, Jones rushes with his buddy to the bar, and drinks 3 straight bourbons. Then, wisely, he drives home, stopping only to hit the bumper of a woman when he runs a stop sign. (When he gives her his card and says insurance will pay for the damage, she says "Oh no you don't! All these people on the sidewalk saw what happened! We'll settle this right here!")

Arriving home to his elated wife and her mother, they decide to go to dinner at a place called "The Plantation," which is some miles away. He drinks one martini in celebration with his wife and mom, and drains another two in secret. (This after paying a $25 fine for the first accident.) He keeps speeding and speeding and HE'S GOING TOO FAST AND THEN...BOOOOOOOOOM!

Naturally, his wife her the baby in the truck he God knows who else. It's all too much. He cracks up, crying hysterically (and quite annoyingly). Dissolve back to stern-faced expert, who delivers lecture. And then it's all over.

OK, I've had my fun. What do you really expect from an educational movie? Entertaining as an artifact, and also as one of the first works of David Miller, who later directed Kirk Douglas in Lonely Are The Brave. This movie plays under the label "One-Reel Wonder" on TCM.

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