7.7/10
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54 user 23 critic

Gentleman Jim (1942)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, Romance | 14 November 1942 (USA)
As bareknuckled boxing enters the modern era, brash extrovert Jim Corbett uses new rules and dazzlingly innovative footwork to rise to the top of the top of the boxing world.

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

Complete credited cast:
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Carlton De Witt
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Buck Ware
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Anna Held (as Madeleine LeBeau)
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Harry Watson
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Storyline

Because boxing is a considered an illegal and disreputable enterprise in 1880's San Francisco, wealthy and influential members of the prestigious Olympic Club vow to make the sport a "gentlemanly" one. They sponsor a brash, extroverted young bank clerk named Jim Corbett, who quickly becomes an accomplished fighter under the new Marquis of Queensbury Rules. Despite his success, the young Irish-American's social pretensions and boastful manner soon estrange him from his benefactors, who plot to give their conceited former protégé a well-deserved comeuppance. Despite this, his dazzlingly innovative footwork helps him to beat a succession of bigger and stronger men, and he finally finds himself fighting for the world's championship against his childhood idol, John L. Sullivan. Written by duke1029

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Taglines:

The grandest story of the Naughty "Nineties" becomes the gayest picture of the Fighting "Forties!"


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

14 November 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der freche Kavalier  »

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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 Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on February 14, 1944 with Errol Flynn, Alexis Smith and Ward Bond reprising their film roles. See more »

Goofs

In the fight scene at the beginning of the movie, when the police swarm in and begin beating the two fighters with their night sticks, you can clearly see several of them flexing as they are being swung. This is particularly evident with the officer on the left as he repeatedly hits "The Mauler". It's obvious they are made of rubber. See more »

Quotes

Victoria Ware: You're thinking about Sullivan?
James J. Corbett aka Gentleman Jim: Yeah. I can see him now walking back to his room, alone, lying there all night and thinking, 'What's the use of ever getting up again?' John L! He'll never thump another bar and shout, 'I can lick any man in the world.' He must be lost.
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Connections

Referenced in Adam Adamant Lives!: Beauty Is an Ugly Word (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(uncredited)
Traditional Scottish 17th century music
In the score during the opening credits and in scenes after the Sullivan fight
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User Reviews

 
Top dollar sports biopic.
21 March 2008 | by See all my reviews

Loosely based on the James J Corbett biography "The Roar Of The Crowd", Gentleman Jim is a wonderfully breezy picture that perfectly encapsulates not only the rise of the pugilistic prancer that was Corbett, but also the wind of change as regards the sport of boxing circa the 1890s.

The story follows Corbett {a perfectly casted Errol Flynn} from his humble beginnings as a bank teller in San Fransico, thru to a chance fight with an ex boxing champion that eventually leads to him fighting the fearsome heavyweight champion of the world, John L Sullivan {beefcake personified delightfully by Ward Bond}. Not all the fights are in the ring tho, and it's all the spin off vignettes in Corbett's life that makes this a grand entertaining picture. There are class issues to overcome here {perfectly played out as fellow club members pay to have him knocked down a peg or two}, and Corbett has to not only fight to get respect from his so called peers, but he must also overcome his ego as it grows as briskly as his reputation does. Along with the quite wonderful Corbett family, and all their stoic humorous support, Corbett's journey is as enthralling as it is joyous, yet as brash and as bold as he is, he is a very likable character, and it's a character that befits the tagged moniker he got of Gentleman Jim.

The film never sags for one moment, and it's a testament to director Raoul Walsh that although we are eagerly awaiting the final fight, the outer ring goings on are keeping us firmly entertained, not even the love interest sub plot hurts this picture {thank you Alexis Smith}. The fight sequences stand up really well, and they perfectly show just how Corbett became the champ he was, his brand of dancing rings round slugger fighters is now firmly placed in boxing history. As the final reel rolls we all come down to earth as an after fight meeting between Sullivan and Corbett puts all the brutality into context, and it's here where humility and humbleness becomes the outright winner, and as far as this viewer goes, it will do for me to be sure to be sure. 9/10 for a truly wonderful picture.


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