Down 6,857 this week

Dust Be My Destiny (1939)

 -  Drama  -  16 September 1939 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 337 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 2 critic

Embittered after serving time for a burglary he did not commit, Joe Bell is soon back in jail, on a prison farm. His love for the foreman's daughter leads to a fight between them, leading ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (novel), 1 more credit »
0Check in

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 100 titles
created 21 Mar 2011
a list of 35 titles
created 29 Aug 2011
a list of 10 titles
created 20 Nov 2011
a list of 1640 titles
created 08 Mar 2012
list image
a list of 1282 titles
created 2 weeks ago

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Dust Be My Destiny (1939)

Dust Be My Destiny (1939) on IMDb 6.9/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Dust Be My Destiny.


Cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Bell
Mabel Alden
Mike Leonard
Frank McHugh ...
Billy Halop ...
Hank Glenn
Bobby Jordan ...
Jimmy Glenn
Henry Armetta ...
Stanley Ridges ...
Charlie Garrett
Moroni Olsen ...
Slim Jones - Defense Attorney
Victor Kilian ...
Doc Saunders
Frank Jaquet ...
Abe Connors
Ferike Boros ...
Delicatessen Proprietress


Embittered after serving time for a burglary he did not commit, Joe Bell is soon back in jail, on a prison farm. His love for the foreman's daughter leads to a fight between them, leading to the older man's death due to a weak heart. Joe and Mabel go on the run as he thinks no-one would believe a nobody like him. Written by Ian Harries <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

16 September 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dust Be My Destiny  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on April 14, 1941 with John Garfield reprising his film role. See more »


Referenced in Public Enemies: The Golden Age of the Gangster Film (2008) See more »


Dust Be My Destiny
Music by Max Steiner and M.K. Jerome
Lyrics by Jack Scholl
Played on the radio in the hotel room
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

They Still Made Me a Criminal
17 May 2011 | by (Earth) – See all my reviews

After serving time for a crime he didn't commit, rowdy and rebellious John Garfield (as Joe Bell) is released from prison early. But, it wasn't for good behavior; the real burglar was caught in a hold-up. With no resources, Mr. Garfield hooks up with "Dead End" kid Billy Halop (as Hank Glenn) and his fifteen-year-old brother Bobby Jordan (as Jimmy). On the east coast, the three ride the rails as tramps, but get in trouble with the law; they receive brief sentences on the county work farm.

Assigned to milk cows, Garfield meets pretty Priscilla Lane from "Four Daughters" (1938) in the barn. She is the step-child of drunken foreman Stanley Ridges (as Charlie Garreth). Due to a bad heart, Mr. Ridges kicks the bucket during a fight with Garfield, after the former finds the latter lounging by the hay with Ms. Lane. Naturally, the authorities mistakenly believe Garfield committed murder. He and Lane go on the run. Good Samaritans help the hungry couple, but the law closes in...

This social consciousness drama is episodic to a fault, with some confusing transitions. The first occurs when Garfield is suddenly seen with two of the "Dead End Kids" from "They Made Me a Criminal" (1939). Obviously, the studio meant to evoke earlier films. Helpful Alan Hale (as Mike Leonard) and the Warner Bros. cast and crew go through the familiar motions. Everyone does their job well enough, but it just doesn't rise to the level of the studio's better work in the genre.

***** Dust Be My Destiny (9/16/39) Lewis Seiler ~ John Garfield, Priscilla Lane, Alan Hale, Billy Halop

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Dust Be My Destiny (1939) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: