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The Secret 6 (1931)

Passed | | Crime, Drama | 18 April 1931 (USA)
After rising bootlegger Slaughterhouse Scorpio eliminates his gangland competition, two reporters and a cabal of six businessmen work to expose him.

Director:

George W. Hill (as George Hill)

Writer:

Frances Marion (story and dialogue)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Wallace Beery ... Louis Scorpio
Lewis Stone ... Richard Newton - Attorney at Law
Johnny Mack Brown ... Hank Rogers (as John Mack Brown)
Jean Harlow ... Anne Courtland
Marjorie Rambeau ... Peaches
Paul Hurst ... Nick Mizoski - the Gouger
Clark Gable ... Carl Luckner
Ralph Bellamy ... Johnny Franks
John Miljan ... Joe Colimo
DeWitt Jennings ... Chief of Police Donlin
Murray Kinnell ... Metz - the Dummy
Fletcher Norton ... Jimmy Delano
Louis Natheaux ... Eddie
Frank McGlynn Sr. ... Judge (as Frank McGlynn)
Theodore von Eltz ... District Attorney Keeler (as Theodore Von Eltz)
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Storyline

Bootlegger/cafe owner Ralph Bellamy recruits crude working man Wallace Beery to join his gang which is masterminded by crooked criminal defense lawyer Lewis Stone. Beery eventually takes over Bellamy's operation, beats a rival gang, becomes wealthy and dominates the city for several years until a secret group of 6 masked businessmen have him prosecuted and sent to the electric chair with the help of rival crusading newspapermen Clark Gable and Johnny Mack Brown. Waitress Jean Harlow is torn between her love for the honest newsman Brown and her financial dependence on her generous boss, Beery. Written by Sandra Bockelman

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

18 April 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Secret Six See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$494,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After previewing Warner Bros. upcoming releases of "Public Enemy" and "Little Caeser," MGM production chief Irving Thalberg commissioned writer Francis Marion to come up with MGM's first real "talking" gangster picture. See more »

Goofs

Although supposedly set in Chicago, after the shoot-out in the bar, as the gangs drive off on the rear-projection in the background can be seen the large vertical sign for the Metropolitan Theater in Los Angeles (at the corner of 6th and Hill Streets). That footage was also shot in 1929 or before as during that year Paramount bought the theater and renamed it "The Paramount). The distinctive 5-globe Llewellyn Iron Works streetlights are also a giveaway those shots were done in L.A. See more »

Quotes

Scorpio: Don't let that dame get away from you and get right back here. We might have to use the rods to get out of this joint. Scram.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Public Enemies: The Golden Age of the Gangster Film (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played at the party for Scorpio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Gangsters loose at MGM
18 April 2016 | by MikeMagiSee all my reviews

Despite the title, the Secret Six (a group of masked crime-fighting citizens) don't have much to do in this gangster thriller. On the other hand, it's a chance to see a young Clark Gable just a few years before MGM promoted him to super-stardom. As a probing newspaperman, he's billed way down in the cast list but gets more than ample time to show off his acting chops. Another surprise is Ralph Bellamy before he was sentenced to a life of losing the girl in countless comedies as an urbane mobster -- and he's surprisingly menacing. The star of the movie is Wallace Beery as a slaughterhouse worker turned mob boss and he does his usual job, growling, grimacing and chewing the scenery. Well worth watching in a genre that MGM usually left to Warner Bros.


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