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Ball of Fire (1941)

Passed  -  Comedy | Romance  -  2 December 1941 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 6,821 users  
Reviews: 78 user | 33 critic

A group of ivory-tower lexicographers realize they need to hear how real people talk, and end up helping a beautiful singer avoid police and escape from the Mob.

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(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Title: Ball of Fire (1941)

Ball of Fire (1941) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Oskar Homolka ...
Prof. Gurkakoff (as Oscar Homolka)
...
Prof. Jerome
...
Prof. Magenbruch
Tully Marshall ...
Prof. Robinson
Leonid Kinskey ...
Prof. Quintana
...
Prof. Oddly
Aubrey Mather ...
Prof. Peagram
...
Garbage Man
...
Joe Lilac
Dan Duryea ...
Duke Pastrami
Ralph Peters ...
Asthma Anderson
Kathleen Howard ...
Miss Bragg
Mary Field ...
Miss Totten
Edit

Storyline

Sexy, wisecracking nightclub singer Sugarpuss O'Shea is a hot tomato who needs to be kept on ice: mobster boyfriend Joe Lilac is suspected of murder and Sugarpuss' testimony could put him away. Naive Professor Bertram Potts meets Miss O'Shea while researching an article on slang and in true romantic comedy fashion the two worlds collide. When Miss O'Shea hides out with Potts and his fellow professors, everyone learns something new: the professors how to cha-cha and Potts the meaning of "yum-yum"! Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"I LOVE HIM because he doesn't know how to kiss -- THE JERK!" See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 December 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Professor and the Burlesque Queen  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Pastrami and Asthma have the professors hostage in the library, the gunmen begin shooting at random items. One gunman (Pastrami) says, "I saw me a picture last week," and proceeds to lick his thumb and then rubs it on the sight of his gun. This is a reference to star Gary Cooper's previous movie Sergeant York (1941) in which York uses this as a technique to improve his marksmanship. See more »

Goofs

During the walk through central park, the camera shadow is visible on Professor Gurkakoff's torso. See more »

Quotes

Sugarpuss O'Shea: [examining the professors' books] Oh, "Greek philosophy!" I got a set like this with a radio inside.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Histoire(s) du cinéma: Une histoire seule (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet Genevieve
(1869) (uncredited)
Music by Henry Tucker
Lyrics by George Cooper
Performed a cappella by the professors
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
.....ONCE AGAIN, THE ORIGINAL RULES... ..... ...... THE RE-MAKE DOESN'T DO IT
29 September 1999 | by (NEW JERSEY, USA) – See all my reviews

A silly farce of a story that works. The elderly academians are stereotypically perfect. Gary Cooper does his "aww, shucks", naive, signature performance in a worthy role. Barbara Stanwyck is (always) "one hot mama". Great chemistry between the street smart Stanwyck character and the shy, bashful Cooper.

A later version with Danny Kaye falls flat. Instead of slang, they are researching music. Great musical cameo's, but the four star (rated 10) version is the original. I always thought Kaye's brand of humor more suited to children.

The original is funny and cute, the re-make seems like leftover pieces squeezed together to fit a pre-established mold. It lacks charm, stick with the real thing...THIS ONE!!!


32 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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