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Only Angels Have Wings (1939)

 -  Adventure | Drama  -  15 May 1939 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 7,010 users  
Reviews: 58 user | 49 critic

At a remote South American trading port, the manager of an air freight company is forced to risk his pilots' lives in order to win an important contract.

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Title: Only Angels Have Wings (1939)

Only Angels Have Wings (1939) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Director: Howard Hawks
Stars: James Cagney, Pat O'Brien, June Travis
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Bat Mac Pherson
...
Judy MacPherson
...
Allyn Joslyn ...
Sig Ruman ...
Dutchy (as Sig Rumann)
Victor Kilian ...
Sparks
John Carroll ...
Gent Shelton
...
Tex (as Donald Barry)
...
Joe Souther
Manuel Álvarez Maciste ...
The Singer (as Maciste)
Milisa Sierra ...
Lily (as Milissa Sierra)
Lucio Villegas ...
Doctor
...
Mike
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Storyline

While waiting for her boat, Bonnie Lee stops at a small airport in South America. The pilots there deliver mail over a dangerous and usually foggy mountain pass. Geoff Carter, the lead flyer, seems distant and cold as Bonnie tries to get closer to him. Things heat up as Judy MacPherson, Geoff's old flame, shows up with her husband who is an infamous pilot. Written by Paul Donahue

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Thundering DRAMA! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

15 May 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Howard Hawks' Only Angels Have Wings  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the role of Judy MacPherson, Howard Hawks screen-tested Dorothy Comingore, Rochelle Hudson and Rita Hayworth. He selected Hayworth because she had a face "that the camera likes." See more »

Goofs

When Carter is shot by Jean Arthur's character, the hammer on the the revolver had not been drawn back. A revolver will not discharge from just being dropped on table unless it had been cocked; and even then it's not a certainty. See more »

Quotes

Les Peters: [the other fliers won't drink with McPherson] Do you mind, Elena? We're going to move. Coming Geoff?
Geoff Carter: No, this is good enough for me.
Bat Kilgallen - MacPherson: Not so particular, huh?
Geoff Carter: I don't think even *you* can spoil good liquor.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Rita Hayworth: The Columbia Lady (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

The Arkansas Traveler
Written by Sanford Faulkner
Piano background music played in the restaurant
See more »

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User Reviews

 
This film flies on Hawks' wings
22 February 1999 | by (Anchorage, Alaska) – See all my reviews

For a remarkably compelling story about a fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants airmail service in South America, director Howard Hawks has assembled a cast that includes Cary Grant as the airline's owner and Jean Arthur as a tourist stranded between boats who catches his eye. While the performances are all superb (especially Thomas Mitchell as the veteran pilot Kid), it is Hawks who turns a rather ordinary plot into an extraordinary film. Watch this movie for its visual style and atmospheric mood (note especially how Hawks fills the frame with actors while Arthur and Grant are sitting at the barroom piano), and be prepared for the ride of your life!


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