IMDb > Secret Service of the Air (1939)

Secret Service of the Air (1939) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

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5.7/10   142 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Raymond L. Schrock (original screen play)
W.H. Moran (based upon material compiled by: ex-chief of U.S. Secret Service)
Contact:
View company contact information for Secret Service of the Air on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
4 March 1939 (USA) See more »
Tagline:
AIRPLANE SPY RING EXPOSED BY SECRET SERVICE! NOw you can see the amazing inside story of how Uncle Sam's secret guardians smash vicious international air spies! (original poster) See more »
Plot:
Brass Bancroft and his sidekick Gabby Watters are recruited onto the secret service and go undercover to crack a ruthless gang that smuggles illegal aliens. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
'B' movie, as in 'Brass Bancroft' See more (7 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Ronald Reagan ... Lt. 'Brass' Bancroft

John Litel ... Saxby
Ila Rhodes ... Pamela Schuyler
James Stephenson ... Jim Cameron
Eddie Foy Jr. ... Gabby Watters
Rosella Towne ... Zelma Warren
Larry Williams ... Dick Wayne
John Ridgely ... Joe LeRoy
Anthony Averill ... Hafer
Bernard Nedell ... Earl 'Ace' Hemrich
Frank M. Thomas ... Doc
Joe Cunningham ... Agent Dawson
Morgan Conway ... Edward V. Powell
John Harron ... Agent Cliff Durell
Herbert Rawlinson ... Adm. A.C. Schuyler
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Raymond Bailey ... Klune - Henchman Starting Fight (uncredited)
Emilio Blanco ... Mexican (uncredited)
Richard Bond ... Buzzy - San Francisco Radio Operator (uncredited)
Sidney Bracey ... John 'Joe' Vicary (uncredited)
Nat Carr ... Drunk at Bar (uncredited)
Glen Cavender ... Waiter (uncredited)
Eddy Chandler ... Capt. King - Highway Patrol (uncredited)
Lane Chandler ... U.S. Border Patrol Officer (uncredited)
Davison Clark ... Deputy Warden (uncredited)
Hal Craig ... Ground Superintendent (uncredited)
Edgar Edwards ... Convict Crowley (uncredited)
Jack A. Goodrich ... Patrol Co-Pilot (uncredited)
Sol Gorss ... Patrol Pilot (uncredited)
Duke Green ... Second Tough in Fight (uncredited)
John Hamilton ... Warden Jackson (uncredited)
Harry Hollingsworth ... Guard (uncredited)
Stuart Holmes ... Agent Gowing (uncredited)
Al Lloyd ... Convict Bartell (uncredited)
Frank Mayo ... Treasury Agent Manning (uncredited)

Carlyle Moore Jr. ... Glendale Radio Operator (uncredited)
Alberto Morin ... Pedro - Mexican Bartender (uncredited)
Jack Mower ... Treasury Agent Aldrich (uncredited)
Pat O'Malley ... Guard Cooper (uncredited)
Henry Otho ... The Turnkey (uncredited)
Paul Panzer ... Ivan - an Alien (uncredited)
John J. Richardson ... Alien - First Flight (uncredited)
Dave Roberts ... Highway Police Announcer (voice) (uncredited)
Cliff Saum ... Alien - First Flight (uncredited)
Jeffrey Sayre ... Road Gang Guard (uncredited)
John Sinclair ... First Tough in Fight (uncredited)
George Sorel ... Capt. Cortez - Mexican Police (uncredited)
Don Turner ... Agent Harper (uncredited)
Pierre Watkin ... Chief Morrow (uncredited)
Jack Wise ... Ivan's Alien Pal (uncredited)
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Directed by
Noel M. Smith  (as Noel Smith)
 
Writing credits
Raymond L. Schrock (original screen play) (as Raymond Schrock)

W.H. Moran (based upon material compiled by: ex-chief of U.S. Secret Service)

Produced by
Bryan Foy .... associate producer (uncredited)
Hal B. Wallis .... executive producer (uncredited)
Jack L. Warner .... executive producer (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Ted D. McCord (photography) (as Ted McCord)
Arthur Edeson (uncredited)
 
Film Editing by
Doug Gould (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Ted Smith 
 
Costume Design by
Howard Shoup (gowns)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Elmer Decker .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Dolph Thomas .... sound
 
Stunts
Sol Gorss .... stunts (uncredited)
Duke Green .... stunts (uncredited)
John Sinclair .... stunts (uncredited)
Don Turner .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Leo F. Forbstein .... musical director (uncredited)
Bernhard Kaun .... composer: music cues (uncredited)
Bernhard Kaun .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Frank Beckwith .... dialogue director
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
61 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Finland:(Banned) (1939) | Norway:A | USA:Approved (PCA #4706) | USA:TV-G (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The Corrigan mentioned by Gabby is a reference to Douglas "Wrong Way" Corrigan (January 22, 1907 - December 9, 1995), an American aviator born in Galveston, Texas. He earned the nickname "Wrong Way" in 1938 when after a transcontinental flight from Long Beach, California, to New York, he flew from Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, New York, to Ireland, though his flight plan was filed to return to Long Beach. He was thereafter known in American culture as "Wrong Way" Corrigan.See more »
Quotes:
Gabby Watters:[to detective] No so fast! Not so fast! Why, one word from me to the chief and that badge'll be as useless to you as a compass was to Corrigan.
[to detective]
See more »
Soundtrack:
Shuffle Off to BuffaloSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
1 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
'B' movie, as in 'Brass Bancroft', 3 June 2009

Too many people even today still don't realize the "B" designation merely meant lower budget -- or, sometimes, low budget.

This particular "B" movie -- the first in a series -- didn't cost as much to make as, say, an equally action-packed flick with Errol Flynn, but there is still an entertaining aspect.

The cast is a good one, with some top-notch talent not even getting screen credit. Such stellar names as John Hamilton, and Eddy Chandler and Lane Chandler, Pierre Watkin and Pat O'Malley, are not names at all, until a fan comes to IMDb to look.

Ronald Reagan is the star, and he was still looking to break out of the ranks, after being overshadowed (and I honestly don't understand why, after seeing the film recently) in "Brother Rat" by Eddie Albert.

Yes, Albert turned into a great actor, but in "Brother Rat" he was rather blah, possibly because his character was, and Reagan came across stronger, again possibly because of his character.

In this movie, Reagan shines: He is a very good-looking man, with a great smile, and he handles the action scenes well, and, perhaps most important, he displays a very winning personality.

The Brass Bancroft character appeared in several more films of this popular series and finally, after doing well as secondary characters in bigger-budget movies (with the like of Bette Davis and Humphrey Bogart), he got his chance at stardom.

This "Secret Service" entry might not seem like anything startlingly new today, but in 1939 it broke some ground. Right at the beginning, when the pilot fears being caught carrying illegal aliens, the horrific act surely shocked audiences.

I've been wanting for years to see the Bancroft series or at least a Bancroft movie, and finally, thanks to Turner Classic Movies, I have.

All in all, it's a good story with a million-dollar cast.

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