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Boom Town (1940)

Passed  -  Adventure | Drama | Romance  -  30 August 1940 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 1,841 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 11 critic

Two buddies who rise from fly-by-night wildcatters to oil tycoons over a twenty year period both love the same woman.

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Title: Boom Town (1940)

Boom Town (1940) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Square John Sand
...
...
Karen Vanmeer
...
Luther Aldrich
...
Harry Compton
...
Harmony Jones
Marion Martin ...
Whitey
Minna Gombell ...
Spanish Eva
Joe Yule ...
Ed Murphy
Horace Murphy ...
Tom Murphy
Roy Gordon ...
McCreery
Richard Lane ...
Ass't. District Attorney
Casey Johnson ...
Little Jack
Baby Quintanilla ...
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Storyline

Buddies Big John McMasters and Square John Sand are fast-talking, wisecracking wildcatters who manage to con enough equipment and capital to develop their own oil fields, but their friendship is put to the test when Big John inadvertently falls in love with Elizabeth, Square John's longtime girlfriend. Eventually their friendship and partnership comes to an end on the flip of a coin. Years later, when Big John's interest in the beautiful Karen Vanmeer threatens his marriage too, Square John intervenes in an effort to save the marriage of his former friend - even if it means ruining him financially. Written by G. Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

GABLE and TRACY...buddies in battle! COLBERT and LAMARR...rivals in love! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Boom Town!  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rita Hayworth did a screen test for the role of Karen Vanmeer. See more »

Quotes

Jonathan Sand: Now, how can a guy be breaking the law when he's trying to save the resources of this country? He didn't know that he was doin' anything that you might call conservation, but bein' one of the best oilmen there is, he's got the right hunch about oil. He knows it took billions of years to put it there, and takin' it out at the rate we're goin', there won't be any oil left in the good U.S.A.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Quicker'n a Wink (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

After You've Gone
(1918) (uncredited)
Music by Turner Layton
Lyrics by Henry Creamer
Played in the dance hall and sung by Marion Martin
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Gable's most personal role
9 January 2004 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

When one thinks of roles identified with Clark Gable, Boom Town does not immediately come to mind. Yet this film, done at what most would consider the high water mark of Gable's career (after Gone With the Wind and before Carole Lombard's death) was possibly his most personal role. Before he was actor Gable worked in the oil fields with his widowed father. After that he decided acting was a far easier way to make a living. But he actually lived the life that he and Spencer Tracy portrayed in Boom Town. He brings more to the part of Big John McMasters than any other part he ever did. I'm sure he was an unofficial technical consultant on the film.

The film is also an ode to laissez faire capitalism, maybe one of the most right wing films ever done in Hollywood. You will never hear Herbert Hoover's rugged individualism better justified than in Spencer Tracy's speech to the jury in Gable's anti-trust trial. One half of the script writing team was James Edward Grant who later did many of the more propagandistic films that John Wayne did.

Frank Morgan is his usual befuddled self, he had a patent on those parts. Claudette Colbert is fine as the woman both men love and Hedy Lamarr was her usual alluring self.

Great entertainment all around.


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