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Captain America (1944)

Superhero Captain America battles the evil forces of the archvillain called The Scarab, who poisons his enemies and steals a secret device capable of destroying buildings by sound vibrations.

Writers:

(original screenplay) (as Royal Cole), (original screenplay) | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Gail Richards
...
Cyrus Maldor
Charles Trowbridge ...
Dryden
Russell Hicks ...
Randolph
...
Bart Matson
John Davidson ...
Gruber
Norman Nesbitt ...
Newscaster
...
Lyman [Ch. 1]
Hugh Sothern ...
Eldon Dodge [Chs. 2-5]
Tom Chatterton ...
J.C. Henley [Chs. 6-8]
...
Clinton Lyman [Chs. 10-12]
...
G.F. Hillman [Chs. 13-14]
Crane Whitley ...
Dirk [Chs. 11-12]
Edward Keane ...
Agent 33 [Ch. 15]
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Storyline

Superhero Captain America battles the evil forces of the archvillain called The Scarab, who poisons his enemies and steals a secret device capable of destroying buildings by sound vibrations.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BLAZING ACROSS THE SCREEN IN A SERIAL OF REAL LIFE ADVENTURES! (original print ad-all caps)


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 February 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Return of Captain America  »

Box Office

Budget:

$222,906 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(15 chapters)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1944, Dick Purcell died of heart failure, just five months after shooting of the serial finished. See more »

Goofs

Throughout the serial, the word "Mayan" is pronounced "MAY-an" instead of the correct "MY-an." See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Scarab: This is the voice of the Scarab, Wilson. I command you to drive your car over the cliff!
See more »

Connections

Version of Spider-Man Unlimited (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
American Idle
6 February 2008 | by (Portland, OR, United States) – See all my reviews

This serial has nothing to do with the original comic book Captain America but is still entertaining. Some people considered the star, Dick Purcell, to be pudgy but this is simply not so. He just had a more realistic body type than a male growth hormone guzzling freak like Sylvester Stallone. The men of Dick Purcell's era had survived the Great Depression and when they were hungry they ate meat and potatoes. Go take a look at your own gut sometime! Overall, Purcell made a pretty good serial hero, tough enough to do the job convincingly, a reasonably good actor, not wearing his angst and self doubt on his shirt sleeve like some modern sissy boy hero. While not as great as Buster Crabbe or Tom Tyler, he was better than Kirk Alyn (sorry, Kirk).

This serial has lots of excellent fight scenes and great cliff hangers. Also, there is a sequence where Captain America rides the Republic motorcycle, which was also seen in 'Spy Smasher.' The villain, Lionel Atwill, is probably one of the best serial villains, perhaps even better than Charles Middleton as Emperor Ming. Perhaps it would have been wiser to do this in the usual 12 chapters, as opposed to 15, but then again, if I minded wasting my time, why would I watch these old serials? Overall, this is a pretty good serial, and as such it has a higher value for escapist fun than most modern super-heroic cinema. One significant criticism I will make, however, is the inexplicable exclusion of all references to WWII. When it's WWII out there, and you have Captain America, a character created to fight WWII, yet the story has nothing to do with WWII, well, that is an awfully big elephant in the room. It would be akin, say, to a nation that spends $200 million a day for 10 years on a war, with the public having no reliable knowledge of the causes, progress, or effects of the war.


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