7.3/10
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62 user 41 critic

They Drive by Night (1940)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 3 August 1940 (USA)
Two brothers struggle as wildcat truck drivers; one comes to harm, the other is accused of his friend's murder.

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(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Harry McNamara
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George Rondolos
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Storyline

Brothers Paul and Joe Fabrini run a trucking business in California mainly shipping fruit from farms to the markets in Los Angeles. They struggle to make ends meet in the face of corrupt businessmen and intense competition. They are forced into driving long hours and one night pick-up waitress Cassie Hartley who's just quit her job at a truck stop. The three of them witness the death of a mutual acquaintance when he falls asleep at the wheel. This has a profound effect on Paul and Joe and they become determined to find a way to make the business pay so they can quit. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Thrills . . . from coast to coast . . . ! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

3 August 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

De färdas om natten  »

Box Office

Budget:

$400,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The $580 for the load of lemons would be the equivalent of $9,865 in 2016. See more »

Goofs

In the prison an electric eye door opens when Lana Carlsen and the guard breaks the ray. Afterwards they break the ray several more times without the door moving until it finally closes after they enter the other room. See more »

Quotes

Joe Fabrini: l ain't danced in a long time.
Cassie Hartley: Me neither, and l used to love it. lt's the most fun you can have without laughing.
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Connections

Referenced in Play It Again, Sam (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

Devil May Care
(1940) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played when Joe is leaving the party
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User Reviews

 
Evil Electric Eye Gets The Skippers Dad
28 August 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I get more respect for director Raoul Walsh with every film of his I see. In this one for Warner Brothers he does an excellent job with a strong cast telling a story about California Long Haul Truckers in the late 1930's. The realism is there all the way through.

This is one of George Rafts better performances, and Ida Lupino is excellent as the woman he scorns. Ann Sheridan is very good as the woman he loves. Humphrey Bogart in a supporting role is very good as Rafts brother. Alan Hale Sr. does a fine job as Lupinos husband.

The film gives the viewer a very strong flavor for what the early long haul trucking was like before World War 2. With the roads the way they were in that era, Long Haul in this is shorter than today & trucks were really just getting started, the railroads still dominated freight then in the US.

The story while more predictable than Dark Command which Walsh had just finished, still does a good job of pulling in the viewer with Raft & Bogarts characters flying on the edge of failure early in the film. The accident sequences are done crudely but this was in a day when the special effects were still developing. The main action in this film is truck accidents & a couple of fist fights.

This is a very fundamentally sound film as Raol Walsh always seems to deliver. In this case, the truckers deliver a good story.


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Ida Lupino is excellent!!! Romojo
they drive by night colorized waggsmom
Ed Carlson too naive? jeffreylincoln
Same plot as Bordertown (1935) berlin45
Gale Page beats out Lupino and Sheridan rkolsen
Theme music. Hup234!
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