IMDb > White Heat (1949)
White Heat
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White Heat (1949) More at IMDbPro »

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White Heat -- Oscar-winner James Cagney explodes on the screen as a demented gangster whose intricate plan to rob an oil refinery is thwarted by a government infiltrator. Co-starring Oscar-winner Edmond O'Brien and Virginia Mayo.


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8.2/10   19,548 votes »
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Down 59% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Ivan Goff (screen play) and
Ben Roberts (screen play) ...
View company contact information for White Heat on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 September 1949 (USA) See more »
James Cagney Is Red Hot In "White Heat"! See more »
A psychopathic criminal with a mother complex makes a daring break from prison and leads his old gang in a chemical plant payroll heist. Shortly after the plan takes place, events take a crazy turn Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Made it Ma... Top of the world! See more (150 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

James Cagney ... Cody Jarrett

Virginia Mayo ... Verna Jarrett

Edmond O'Brien ... Hank Fallon / Vic Pardo
Margaret Wycherly ... Ma Jarrett

Steve Cochran ... Big Ed Somers
John Archer ... Philip Evans
Wally Cassell ... Cotton Valletti

Fred Clark ... Trader Winston
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Joel Allen ... Operative (uncredited)
Claudia Barrett ... Cashier (uncredited)
Ray Bennett ... Guard (uncredited)
Marshall Bradford ... Chief of Police (uncredited)
Chet Brandenburg ... Convict (uncredited)
John Butler ... Motorist at Gas Station (uncredited)
Robert Carson ... Agent at Directional Map (uncredited)
Bill Cartledge ... Car-Hop at Drive-In Theatre (uncredited)
Leo Cleary ... Railroad Fireman (uncredited)
Fred Coby ... Happy Taylor (uncredited)
Tom Coleman ... Court Officer (uncredited)

G. Pat Collins ... The Reader (uncredited)
Garrett Craig ... Ted Clark (uncredited)
Herschel Daugherty ... Policeman (uncredited)
Fern Eggen ... Margaret Baxter (uncredited)
Charles Ferguson ... Plant Detective (uncredited)
Art Foster ... Guard (uncredited)
Eddie Foster ... Lefeld (uncredited)
Robert Foulk ... Oil Refinery Payroll Guard (uncredited)
Buddy Gorman ... Vendor at Drive-in (uncredited)
Paul Guilfoyle ... Roy Parker (uncredited)
Sherry Hall ... Court Clerk (uncredited)
Carl Harbaugh ... Foreman (uncredited)
Clarence Hennecke ... Small Role (uncredited)
Perry Ivins ... Dr. Simpson (uncredited)
Colin Kenny ... Prison Guard (uncredited)
Mickey Knox ... Het Kohler (uncredited)
Harry Lauter ... Man with Microphone in Back Seat of Car (uncredited)
DeForrest Lawrence ... Jim Donovan (uncredited)
Nolan Leary ... Russ (uncredited)
Murray Leonard ... Engineer (uncredited)
Ian MacDonald ... Bo Creel (uncredited)
Larry McGrath ... Clocker (uncredited)
John McGuire ... Psychiatrist #2 (uncredited)

Sid Melton ... Russell Hughes (uncredited)
Art Miles ... Guard (uncredited)
Ray Montgomery ... Ernie (uncredited)
Terry O'Sullivan ... Radio Announcer (uncredited)
Robert Osterloh ... Tommy Ryley (uncredited)
Milton Parsons ... Willie Rolf (uncredited)

Jack Perrin ... Policeman (uncredited)
Jack Perry ... Convict (uncredited)
Lee Phelps ... Prison Tower Guard (uncredited)
Eddie Phillips ... T-Man (uncredited)
John Pickard ... T-Man Driving Car C (uncredited)
Ford Rainey ... Zuckie Hommell (uncredited)
Joey Ray ... T-Man (uncredited)
Grandon Rhodes ... Dr. Harris - Psychiatrist #1 (uncredited)
Jeffrey Sayre ... Plant Detective (uncredited)
George Spaulding ... Judge (uncredited)
Harry Strang ... Prison Infirmary Guard (uncredited)
George Taylor ... Police Surgeon at Tahoe Morgue (uncredited)
Jim Thorpe ... Big Convict (uncredited)
Jim Toney ... Brakeman (uncredited)
Ralph Volkie ... Jerry - The Reader's Lawyer (uncredited)
Jack Worth ... Guard (uncredited)

Directed by
Raoul Walsh 
Writing credits
Ivan Goff (screen play) and
Ben Roberts (screen play)

Virginia Kellogg (suggested by a story by)

Produced by
Louis F. Edelman .... producer
Original Music by
Max Steiner 
Cinematography by
Sidney Hickox (director of photography) (as Sid Hickox)
Film Editing by
Owen Marks (film editor)
Art Direction by
Edward Carrere 
Set Decoration by
Fred M. MacLean 
Makeup Department
Perc Westmore .... makeup artist
Edwin Allen .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Gertrude Wheeler .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Russell Saunders .... assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Leslie G. Hewitt .... sound
Special Effects by
Roy Davidson .... special effects director
Hans F. Koenekamp .... special effects (as H.F. Koenekamp)
Audrey Scott .... stunt double: Virginia Mayo (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Frank Bjerring .... still photographer (uncredited)
Paul Burnett .... gaffer (uncredited)
Mike Joyce .... camera operator (uncredited)
Dudie Maschmeyer .... grip (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Leah Rhodes .... wardrobe
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
Murray Cutter .... orchestrator
Other crew
Irva Mae Ross .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
114 min | West Germany:90 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Argentina:16 | Australia:PG | Australia:M (DVD rating) | Canada:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-15 (2004) | Finland:(Banned) (1950) | Iceland:12 | Portugal:M/16 | South Korea:15 | Sweden:15 (re-rating) (1962) | Sweden:(Banned) (original rating) (1949) | UK:15 | USA:Not Rated | USA:Approved (PCA #13852) | USA:TV-PG (TV rating) | West Germany:16 (nf)

Did You Know?

Cameo: [Jim Thorpe]the sports legend is one of the cons in the "telephone game".See more »
Continuity: Roughly 33 minutes in. As Evans and Pardo drink coffee, Evans' coffee cup changes several times from a dark to a light cup.See more »
[Pardo has just saved Cody's life]
Vic Pardo:I saw that just in time.
Cody Jarrett:Whaddya want - a medal?
See more »
Movie Connections:
Five O'Clock WhistleSee more »


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100 out of 131 people found the following review useful.
Made it Ma... Top of the world!, 10 November 2004
Author: Tito32 from Norway

They sure don't make them like this any more!

Blessed with a touch of genius...

Alfred Hitchcock once said that you need three things in order to make a good movie : good script, good script and good script! This is a perfect example of that statement. It is as simple as that! This movie is made in 1949 and today,almost 55 years later, it still holds up and is up there with the best gangster dramas of all time. Many would disagree but frankly who cares? None of the modern gangster flicks would be the same without existence of this movie, thats for sure. The script is just great,the score is excellent and dialog is amazing!!! (try comparing it with the standards of today) Every third sentence coming out of Cody Jarretts mouth is endlessly quotable, this movie is Scarface of its time. Cagneys character in this movie is larger than life, one of the greatest gangster characters of all time... James Cagney - perhaps his greatest performance ever! I see that some fools criticize his performance,saying that it isn't great at all. My question to you is : How many movies from '40s have you seen? How wooden was the acting in those days? The answer - extremely. There were few great actors in those days, whose genius could hold up against the acting giants of today and one of them is surely James Cagney!

One of top 10-15 gangster movies of all time!

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Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Prisons of the 40's and 50's were so tame pj-43676
Cagney's Best Performance? WardenGordonBorden
Rude Rude Rude Nevadalonghorn
Cagney's Greatest Performance? csu16387
'Are you going to shoot me in cold blood?' Capt_Jeffrey_T_Spaulding
Cody tossing small items into bowl curlew-2
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