Golden Boy (1939)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  5 September 1939 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,251 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 13 critic

Despite his musical talent, Joe Bonaparte wants to be a boxer.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Joe Bonaparte
Mr. Bonaparte
Eddie Fuseli
Sam Levene ...
Edward Brophy ...
Roxy Lewis (as Edward S. Brophy)
Beatrice Blinn ...
William H. Strauss ...
Mr. Carp
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Newspaperman (scenes deleted)


Joe Bonaparte's father wants him to pursue his musical talent; but Joe wants to be a boxer. Persuading near-bankrupt manager Tom Moody to give him a chance, Joe quickly rises in his new profession. When he has second thoughts Moody's girl Lorna uses feminine wiles to keep him boxing. But when tough gangster Eddie Fuseli wants to "buy a piece" of Joe, Lorna herself begins to have second thoughts...for that and other reasons. Is it too late? Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Famous Play.....Now A Great Picture! See more »


Drama | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

5 September 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'esclave aux mains d'or  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Clifford Odets inspired his play by the story of Paul Muni when he once told Odets about how he gave up boxing because it endangered his secondary career as a violinist. See more »


In the scene where Eddie Fuseli visits the new office, Lorna is seen sitting on the desk with a half-smoked cigarette although she had no cigarette earlier in the scene. At the beginning of the scene, she was holding a snifter and shot glass. Then Siggie gives her a roll of money. Eddie walks in, Lorna sits on the corner of the desk holding the cash with both hands. 48 seconds later Eddie looks at Lorna, who is holding the money in her left hand and cigarette in her right hand which looks like it must have been lit for at least a minute when compared to the length of Eddie's just lit cigarette. Lorna was not shown getting off the desk and nobody walked over to give her a cigarette or even to light it. A moment later, Eddie and Lorna are standing next to each other and Eddie's cigarette is shorter than Lorna's even though his was lit after or at the same time as Lorna's. See more »


Eddie Fuseli: This your girl?
Lorna Moon: I'm my mother's girl.
See more »


Funiculi, Funicula
Traditional Italian song
Music by Luigi Denza
Lyrics by Peppino Turco
Played on piano by Beatrice Blinn
Sung by Lee J. Cobb, William H. Strauss, William Holden and others
See more »

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User Reviews

Involving Story With Good Characters
31 October 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I found this to be a pretty solid movie with some interesting characters. It was a shock at first to see William Holden this young. I had known him at that time as an older guy. In this film, he looked about 19 and didn't even have the deep voice I was accustomed to hearing. I didn't Lee J. Cobb, either, who played Holden's father, a Jewish man with a beard. Barbara Stanwyck, meanwhile, played her typical role: tough gal with a soft heart underneath.

Story-wise, there were a couple of holes in it near the end which lowered my rating a tiny bit. No stranger, in a big fight, would be allowed to walk into a fighter's dressing room right before the bout. In fairness, I've seen that in other classic films, too, even to the point of the boxer being in his room totally alone and anyone walking in. I don't think so!!!!

Anyway, outside of those little things, it was a well-done and involving story that got me hooked in from the start. I've watched this twice and enjoyed it both times. Now I am just waiting for a DVD of this.

14 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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