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Hoodlum (1997)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  27 August 1997 (USA)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 7,150 users   Metascore: 50/100
Reviews: 53 user | 41 critic | 17 from Metacritic.com

Black gangsters in 1930 Harlem fights Dutch Schultz who is trying to horn in on their numbers racket.

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Title: Hoodlum (1997)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Captain Foley
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Pigfoot Mary
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Albert Salke
Beau Starr ...
Jules Salke
Paul Benjamin ...
Joe Guzaldo ...
Bo Weinberg
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Storyline

The film focuses on the war of two gangs in 1930s Harlem for the control of illegal gaming - one headed by black strategic godfather Bumpy Johnson and another by white ruthless hothead Dutch Schultz. Negotiations proposed by white syndicate boss Lucky Luciano never get under way, blood flows and Johnson gets jailed. When Johnson is paroled, he gets the work of enforcer for mighty Stephanie "The Queen" St. Clair. She is also jailed for racketeering and when she leaves she makes him promise "no violence". Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dutch | 1930s | mobster | blood | violence | See more »

Taglines:

Power is measured in enemies. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic ganster violence, strong language, a scene of sexuality and some nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 August 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Gangster  »

Box Office

Gross:

$23,461,013 (USA) (7 November 1997)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An old friend of the real Lucky Luciano allowed Andy Garcia to wear Lucky's pinkie ring for one scene. You can see it when Lucky gives Thomas Dewey the bribe money at the whorehouse. (when the prostitute takes the cigar out of Lucky's hand). See more »

Goofs

An on-screen title card reads "December, 1934", and an exterior shot shows a building with green grass surrounding it, and the sun shining brightly. In New York in December, the ground should be covered with snow. In the following scene, Dutch Schultz is having a meeting while a Yankees game is playing on the radio in the background. A baseball game wouldn't be in December! See more »

Quotes

Dutch Schultz: I remember the days when you could get a guy hit for 40 bucks.
Mike Salke: We live in inflationary times
See more »

Connections

References Bambi (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)
Written by Duke Ellington and Irving Mills
Performed by Laurnea Wilkerson
Laurnea Wilkerson appears courtesy of Yab Yum Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Predictable, but entertaining
24 May 2001 | by (Germany) – See all my reviews

How great this film could have been! It uses the real history of New York's Gangsters as a background and seems reasonably well researched. At times.

Personally, however, I have several gripes with this movie:

The irritatingly predictable script and much too clean-polished setting seem to come straight out of a "screenwriting-for-housewives" class.

The "messages" in the film (such as its anti-racist and pro-religious scenes) are horribly blatant. The romantic scenes and musical interludes are much too long and boring; the violent scenes too short and clean. Johnson is portrayed as a good gangster at first, which almost works out. His "internal struggle" theme doesn't work at all.

The supposedly elegant Gangster Luciano has to shlep a horrible dog around with him throughout the film. Bumpy Johnson's friend ist forced to do a horrible "funny negro singer" routine, offsetting the supposedly antiracist messages. And that Bumpy Johnson, at the end of the film, finds Gawd and turns away from the evil gangster life is a) predictable and b) idiotic.

"Hoodlum" could've been a great film. As it is, it's merely mediocre.


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