The Lady and the Mob (1939)

Passed  |   |  Action, Adventure, Comedy  |  3 April 1939 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 137 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 1 critic

Society-woman Hattie Leonard organizes her own band of 'gang-busters' when she discovers a garment she sent to the dry-cleaners had been taxed twenty-five-cents to pay for gang 'protection.... See full summary »


(as Ben Stoloff)


(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Fay Bainter ...
Henry Armetta ...
Warren Hymer ...
Harold Huber ...
Forbes Murray ...
Joe Sawyer ...
Blinky Mack (as Joseph Sawyer)
Tom Dugan ...
Brains Logan
Joe Caits ...
Bert the Beetle (as Joseph Caits)
Jim Toney ...
Big Time Tim
Tommy Mack ...
The Canary
Brandon Tynan ...
Mayor Jones
George Meeker ...
George Watson


Society-woman Hattie Leonard organizes her own band of 'gang-busters' when she discovers a garment she sent to the dry-cleaners had been taxed twenty-five-cents to pay for gang 'protection.' She sends to New York City for a reformed gangster she had befriended, Frankie O'Fallon, and he hires the manpower needed from the usual Columbia hoods. Her gang hi-jacks the racketeers, recovers the merchant's money and returns it to them. Lila Thorne, engaged to Hattie' son, Fred, throws in with her future mother-in-law when she sees the old lady is fighting for the American principle of freedom of choice...and action. Lila frames the gang-leader, George Watson, and Hattie's big-city vigilantes kidnap him, and extract the information that the town-mayor, Johnny "J.J." Jones, is the brains behind the protection-gang and is getting the big cut of the money. But Hattie still has to rob a bank before she can secure the evidence needed to convict the mayor. All in a day's work for a crusading society... Written by Les Adams <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A society matron muscles in on the underworld---just to clean it up! (original poster) See more »


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

3 April 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Che succede a San Francisco?  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Otto Hoffman as "Higgins" is in studio records/casting call lists, but he did not appear or was not identifiable in the movie. See more »


Lila Thorne: I may have come from gorillas, but that doesn't mean I have to mix with them socially!
See more »


References You Can't Take It With You (1938) See more »

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User Reviews

Give 'em the tacks, Thorndyke.
27 June 2007 | by (West Virginia) – See all my reviews

For some reason, this film made me laugh out loud...maybe I was just tired or maybe it is as good as that. The story line, the actors and the general goofiness of it are just so endearing.

The acting ensemble is perfect from Fay Bainter to Warren Hymer (he is the Thorndyke of the "Give 'em the tacks" line) to Ida Lupino, et al. The plot revolves around a society matron (and owner of the local bank) who decides to rid the town of the "Mob" by putting together a "Mob" of her own. The results are hilarious as she and her gang go about their job with the help of an armored sedan (which drops tacks on the road to disable the pursuing police), machine guns, a jail-break and a bank heist. It's all great fun.

There is a strange interlude when Bainter harangues the local dry cleaners who are being extorted by the bad mob. It smacks of patriotic propaganda and probably was intended as such since Hitler was running rampant in Europe at that point and the United States was still neutral.

It all ends well.....the big boss is revealed, the bad mob is run out of town and Ida Lupino gets married to Lee Bowman, son of the lady of the mob. Sit back and enjoy this little-known gem of a film.

14 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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