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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 6,864 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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Writers:

(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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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Oskar Homolka ...
Prof. Gurkakoff (as Oscar Homolka)
...
Prof. Jerome
...
Prof. Magenbruch
...
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  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While filming the scene in which Potts declares his love for Sugarpuss in a dark hotel bungalow, Gregg Toland put Barbara Stanwyck in blackface to make sure that her eyes were shining through the darkness. See more »

Goofs

During the "Drumboogie" sequence, the black jazz trumpet soloist Roy Eldridge disappears from the band between shots. See more »

Quotes

Sugarpuss O'Shea: [needing help with a stubborn zipper] You know, I had this happen one night in the middle of my act. I couldn't get a thing off. Was I embarrassed!
See more »

Connections

References Boys Town (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Drum Boogie
(1941) (uncredited)
(Published as "Drumboogie")
Music and Lyrics by Roy Eldridge and Gene Krupa
Performed by Gene Krupa and His Orchestra
Sung by Barbara Stanwyck (dubbed by Martha Tilton)
Reprised by her and audience members
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Ball of fun.
29 November 2001 | by (Huntington, NY) – See all my reviews

Basically, this is a gangster version of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" Here "Snow White" is a night club singer faultlessly played by Barbara Stanwyck. The "evil witch" is the local police, out to haul her in because of tie-in to a gangster (Dana Andrews) The magic forest of course, is New York. The seven dwarfs are a group of introverted professors led by bookworm Gary Cooper.

The film ahs a wonderful screenplay by Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett. (Sample dialog COP: How do you find a needle in a haystack? GANGSTER: Simple. Feed the hay to a horse, and X-Ray the horse.) Directed with zip by the great Howard Hawks.


16 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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