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Larceny, Inc. (1942)

 -  Comedy | Crime  -  2 May 1942 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 1,288 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 6 critic

Three ex-cons buy a luggage shop to tunnel into the bank vault next door. But despite all they can do, the shop prospers...



(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: Larceny, Inc. (1942)

Larceny, Inc. (1942) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
'Pressure' Maxwell
Denny Costello
Jeff Randolph
Leo Dexter
Edward Brophy ...
Weepy Davis
Sam Bachrach
Barbara Jo Allen ...
Mademoiselle Gloria
Mr. Aspinwall
Hobart (as Jackie C. Gleason)
Andrew Tombes ...
Oscar Engelhart
Joe Downing ...
Smitty (as Joseph Downing)
George Meeker ...
Mr. Jackson
Fortunio Bonanova ...
Anton Copoulos


Three bumbling crooks buy a store so that they can rob the bank next door. When they soon discover the money they can make as legitimate businessmen, they abandon their plan. Trouble is, one of their cohorts, who's escaped from jail, won't let them. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Comedy | Crime


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 May 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Larceny, Inc.  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


No children were seen in the film; although Philo Reh ("Urchin"), Fred Walburn ("Urchin") and Janice Ohman ("Little Girl") are in studio records/casting call lists for their roles, they were either cut from the final print or never filmed at all. See more »


The movie takes place shortly before Christmas but the check they receive in the beginning after getting hit by a car is dated February 17. See more »


J. Chalmers 'Pressure' Maxwell: We need finesse for this job.
Jug Martin: Who's that?
See more »


Referenced in Small Time Crooks (2000) See more »


For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
Sung a cappella by the merchants to honor Maxwell
See more »

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User Reviews

Inept Crooks
9 May 2002 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

S. J. Perelman, on whose play this is based, would sometimes use the nom de plume Sidney Namelrep, a silly, devil-may-care joke that is perfectly in tune with his sense of humor. He wrote some of the most outrageously funny pieces ever to appear in the New Yorker. His comedy is filled with whimsy, non sequiturs, twisted cliches, notions that seem to emerge recklessly from nowhere, scarcely masked libidinous allusions, ridiculously transparent self justifications -- the kind of humor associated with the Marx Brothers. And in fact he wrote some of their best lines in (if I remember correctly) "Monkey Business" -- "Hurry, my dear, my regiment leaves at dawn." His wit still can be seen through the screen of the more strict narrative line seen in this movie but because the characters need to seem reasonably sane, their range is a bit restricted. ("Mmm. Did you concoct these little tidbits?") The story itself, fortunately, is so absurd that it rolls right along, in the same league as Warners' "All Through The Night." It's a pretty ancient tale. Thieves getting into a store next to a bank in order to break through the wall into the vault. The first time I remember coming across it was in a Sherlock Holmes tale, "The Red Headed League," and I doubt it was original with Conan-Doyle. This is the earliest movie about such a caper that I'm aware of. But later there was "Big Deal on Madonna Street" and most recently Woody Allan's "Small Time Crooks," which duplicated some of the incidents as well as the general idea. (The thieves break open a water pipe while digging the tunnel; the original plan fizzles out when the phony business upstairs becomes an economic bonanza.) It's a well-done and highly entertaining comedy with the usual roster of Warners' stalwarts at their best. The kind of movie about which you can truly say, "They don't make 'em like that anymore." I don't know how long it took to shoot. Not long, I imagine. New York City is nothing more than a street on the back lot and a handful of interiors. Loyd Bacon, whom no one ever proclaimed a genius, knows how to shoot a film efficienctly, the way a good car mechanic knows his business, moving the bodies around with careless ease. There isn't a wasted motion. Every step, every opening of a door, every snarl and stutter, serves a purpose. Robinson breezes through the whole business. Jane Wyman looks cute. Broderick Crawford is dumb beyond belief. And every item of luggage in the store is "Nine seventy-five." It's all pretty amusing.

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Great movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !CLASSIC!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!! eric_rosenberg7
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