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Johnny Angel (1945)

 -  Crime | Drama | Film-Noir  -  January 1946 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 470 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 5 critic

Johnny Angel sets out to learn who hijacked a gold shipment from his father's ship and killed his father, the captain. He is joined in the search by Paulette, whose own father has been ... See full summary »



(screen play), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Title: Johnny Angel (1945)

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Complete credited cast:
Johnny Angel
Lilah 'Lily' Gustafson
Paulette Girard
Lowell Gilmore ...
Sam Jewell
Celestial O'Brien
Marvin Miller ...
George 'Gusty' Gustafson
Margaret Wycherly ...
Miss Drumm
J. Farrell MacDonald ...
Capt. Angel (as J. Farrell Macdonald)
Mack, the Bartender


Johnny Angel sets out to learn who hijacked a gold shipment from his father's ship and killed his father, the captain. He is joined in the search by Paulette, whose own father has been killed by the hijackers. Written by Jim Beaver <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A New Orleans Woman Plots Murder and Mutiny For Love!


Crime | Drama | Film-Noir


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

January 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Johnny Angel  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Referenced in Choose Me (1984) See more »


Memphis In June
Music by Hoagy Carmichael
Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster (as Paul Webster)
Performed by Hoagy Carmichael (vocalist and pianist) (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

Average Noir With a Few Great Qualities
15 October 2004 | by (Out there in the dark) – See all my reviews

JOHNNY ANGEL is one of those films that might improve on second viewing, maybe because expectations are lowered. Many viewers nowadays see George Raft as a limited actor, and with this starring role as evidence, that seems to be the case. Raft is at best mildly uncomfortable in this film. The 'romance' scenes with Claire Trevor are so obviously forced, with Trevor doing her best to keep the energy level up. She is one of the better things about JOHNNY ANGEL. Another good feature is the cinematography of Harry Wild, casting a noir spell in swirling fog and ethereal light for the dock and and shipboard scenes.

Even better is the score by Leigh Harline. His main title is downright beautiful and deserves to be heard more often as an example of evocative film music that does not rely on singable tunes. (The versatile Harline was also capable of highly singable melody--he is the composer for a number songs and scores heard in Disney films, including PINOCCHIO and SNOW WHITE. His other scores range so widely in terms of genre that he has never really been properly recognized for his talents.)

JOHNNY ANGEL does not have the most compelling plot line imaginable. If Raft were a more dynamic actor, he surely would have imbued his role with more life and believability and that would have helped. But with Trevor, Margaret Wycherly, Marvin Miller and Signe Hasso included, the film does not really suffer in the dramatic department. Perhaps its greatest weakness is a slightly too langorous pace.

Last, but far from least, must be mentioned Hoagy Carmichael in another of his odd film appearances, as Celestial O'Brien of the strange little pencil-propeller. Carmichael must have been cast in several movies for a certain charisma he possessed and for the long list of superlative songs of which he is the composer. Here, we get to hear only one of them, "Memphis in June" (even though the film is set in New Orleans). Carmichael hums snatches of it early on, and performs most of it sitting at the piano (with his back to us) in one scene. His casting in this film seems quite appropriate: there were, and surely still are, many singer-songwriters walking the streets, or driving the taxis, of New Orleans.

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