Salty owes money to Doc Baxter; he and his pal Smitty have one month to pay up. They get a race horse and a disbarred jockey, Johnny Cates, who must fake his identity to race. Johnny and ... See full summary »
Dozens of star and character-actor cameos and a message about the Variety Club (show-business charity) are woven into a framework about two hopeful young ladies who come to Hollywood, ... See full summary »
Olga San Juan,
Mary Rafferty comes from a poor family of steel mill workers in 19th Century Pittsburgh. Her family objects when she goes to work as a maid for the wealthy Scott family which controls the ... See full summary »
Emily Blair is rich and deaf. Doctor Vance, who grew up poor in Blairtown, is working on a serum to cure deafness which he tries on Emily. It doesn't work. Her sister is carrying on an ... See full summary »
Alan Ladd is the focus of this story based on the wartime raid on the German radar station at Bruneval. The raid was a combined services operation and the 2nd Battalion of the 1st Parachute... See full summary »
Susan is about to be married, but the wedding may get called off after her fiancee summons three former beaus. Each reveals a different portrait of Susan: one describes her as a naive ... See full summary »
William A. Seiter
Salty owes money to Doc Baxter; he and his pal Smitty have one month to pay up. They get a race horse and a disbarred jockey, Johnny Cates, who must fake his identity to race. Johnny and Salty both fall in love with Barbara Brooks and, to get even, Johnny considers throwing the horserace. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »
Paramount celebrated Alan Ladd's return from military service by giving him this racetrack story which got an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Ladd plays the title character of Salty O'Rourke who is a racetrack character of sorts and a guy who is no better than he ought to be.
In fact he's got himself in a real jackpot with bookie Bruce Cabot. Ladd's former partner ran up a really big debt and skipped out and Ladd is holding the bag. He negotiates a deal with Cabot for a month's extension.
What he comes up with is a complicated scheme to obtain a spirited, but unrideable race horse and then to get a talented jockey who's been banned for gambling. Ladd and trainer William Demarest buy the horse and then go to Mexico to get jockey Stanley Clements who is leading a dissolute life south of the border.
Ladd and Demarest use the name of Stan's younger brother who is still a juvenile. But because of that the law requires he attend the school run at the racetrack. Clements balks at first, in fact he balks at just about everything. But one look at schoolteacher Gail Russell and he changes his mind. In fact Ladd takes an interest as well and therein lies the problem.
In a role where someone like Tyrone Power who specialized in playing hero/heels like Salty O'Rourke could have been the best casting, Alan Ladd does pretty well by the part. Standing out in the film though is Stanley Clements who was playing a character not too different from what he was in real life. Clements was the wild child and later wilder adult if tales are true. Spring Byington is also in the cast playing Russell's vapid and clueless mother.
Director Raoul Walsh got some racetrack atmospherics in the film and no doubt use of nearby Santa Anita or Hollywood Park was made to the limit. Salty O'Rourke proved that Alan Ladd still had box office appeal and was a good film to return from military service with.
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