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Shoe Shine Boy (1943)

Approved | | Drama, Musical, Short | 25 December 1943 (USA)
A Young shoeshine boy must earn $6 by the end of the day so he can buy a second-hand bugle, because the next day he is going into the U.S. Army.



(original story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Mel Bryant ...
Shoe Shine Boy (as Melvin Bryant)


A show shine boy loves to listen to the horn more than anything. As such, he places a deposit for a bugle from a second hand shop, he needing to come up with an additional $2 to get the bugle, which he knows he will never get unless he comes up with the money before the store closes at the end of the day. As he hustles for business at a bar to raise that $2, the boy comes across two talent agents, Garry Goff and Lucky, who, on a lark, ask the boy to play the trumpet belonging to the bar's band's trumpet player. That incident promises to change the boy's life, but he may have other more pressing issues on his mind for just wanting the $2 to buy that second hand bugle. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Musical | Short






Release Date:

25 December 1943 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)
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Did You Know?


Trumpet Lament
Music by Phil Moore
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User Reviews

A goofy piece of WWII propaganda
6 January 2002 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

A black boy, obsessed with buying a horn at a local pawn shop, tries to earn the final $2 he needs by shining the shoes of rich white men. They are musical scouts, and when they find out that he wants the $2 to buy a horn, they ask him to demonstrate his abilities. He does so in a wonderful musical number. When they offer him a million dollar contract, he becomes upset and says he can't possibly do that. His family would be devastated. The white men are perplexed, but the black boy reveals that he wants to horn so that he can be the bugle boy in the U.S. Army. One of the white men then gladly hands him $2 and delivers the amusing line: "Blow one right in Hitler's face for me, kid!" I saw this between movies on TCM tonight.

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