7.2/10
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24 user 25 critic

The Big House (1930)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 14 June 1930 (USA)
A convict falls in love with his new cellmate's sister, only to become embroiled in a planned break-out which is certain to have lethal consequences.

Directors:

(as George Hill), (uncredited)

Writers:

(story and dialogue), (additional dialogue) (as Joe Farnham) | 1 more credit »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... John Morgan
... Machine Gun 'Butch' Schmidt
... Warden James Adams
... Kent Marlowe
... Anne Marlowe
... Pop
J.C. Nugent ... Mr. Marlowe
... Olsen
... Wallace
... Gopher (as Mathew Betz)
... Mrs. Marlowe
... Donlin (as Robert Emmet O'Connor)
... Uncle Jed (scenes deleted)
Tom Wilson ... Sandy
Eddie Foyer ... Dopey
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Storyline

After a manslaughter conviction from drunk driving, nice but foolish Kent is sent to a prison over-crowded and unable to properly deal with it's inmates. There he meets veteran criminals like Morgan and his hardened pal Butch. And the system punishes them all, turning them against each other and bringing out the worst. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Timely! Tremendous! Thrilling! Drama of Love and a Jail-Break!

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

14 June 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big House  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie relaunched Wallace Beery's career. Before the coming of sound, he had been a top supporting player in silent films but had been dropped by his studio when sound came in. With this film being a huge hit, and Beery earning an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor, he was back in favor, and within two years was the world's highest paid actor. See more »

Goofs

When Anne comes to visit Kent at the prison, and he walks up and says 'Hi sis,' the shadow of the microphone falls across her. See more »

Quotes

John - Prison Guard: Kent Marlowe. Manslaughter. Sentenced to 10 years. First time in prison?
Kent: Yes.
John - Prison Guard: Sir, to me!
Kent: Yes sir.
John - Prison Guard: How old are you?
Kent: Twenty-four, sir.
John - Prison Guard: Ever serve in the Army? Navy? Marine Corps?
Kent: No sir.
John - Prison Guard: Use tobacco?
Kent: Yes sir.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Pardon Us (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

Taps
(1862) (uncredited)
Music by Daniel Butterfield
Played offscreen by a bugler
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Brilliant acting.
30 May 1999 | by See all my reviews

I really enjoyed this film. It was a refreshing change from the films of today which all seem to have to rely on special effects for the film to be a success. The story of 'The big house' is very good and I would venture an opinion that it was far and above the norm for films of that era. The acting was great from Robert Montgomary as Kent Marlowe and Wallace Beery as Butch Schmidt. Leila Hyams as Anne Marlowe was both a stunning looking, and brilliant actress and stole the film with her looks.


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