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The Expert (1932)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama | 5 March 1932 (USA)
An old yet spry man comes to Chicago to live with his son and daughter-in-law. Despite the old fellow's good intentions, he becomes a useless irritation to the couple. However, Grandpa ... See full summary »


Archie Mayo


Edna Ferber (adapted from the play: "Minick" by), George S. Kaufman (adapted from the play: "Minick" by) | 2 more credits »




Complete credited cast:
Charles 'Chic' Sale ... Grandpa John T. Minick
Dickie Moore ... Dickie
Lois Wilson ... Nettie Minick
Ralf Harolde ... Jim Crowley (as Ralf Harold)
Adrienne Dore ... Sadie Crowley
Earle Foxe ... Fred Minick
Noel Francis ... Daisy
Elizabeth Patterson ... Miss Crackenwald
Dorothea Wolbert ... Annie (as Dorothy Wolbert)
Charles E. Evans Charles E. Evans ... Hard of Hearing Grant Resident (as Charles Evans)
Louise Beavers ... Lulu
Walter Catlett ... Al


An old yet spry man comes to Chicago to live with his son and daughter-in-law. Despite the old fellow's good intentions, he becomes a useless irritation to the couple. However, Grandpa befriends a young orphan boy, whom he helps to set upon the straight and narrow path. He finds solace in this relationship and also in the company of elderly men who live in a home nearby. But the orphan boy's step-father hatches an evil plan that will soon upset the apple cart . . . Written by Thomas McWilliams <tgm@netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


LOOK OUT FOR YOUR PLUMBING! The Specialist Has Turned Expert! (Print Ad- Albany Times-Union, ((Albany NY)) 10 March 1932)


Comedy | Drama


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The photo of his wife, "Ma," that Grampa Minick has in his watch is that of Margaret Mann. See more »


Version of No Place to Go (1939) See more »


Auld Lang Syne
(1788) (uncredited)
Traditional Scottish 17th century music
Played in the score twice
See more »

User Reviews

Wit Sacrificed For Sentiment
7 June 2016 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

With his various collaborators one is never sure just how much of George S. Kaufman gets into any of his work. Especially here since the original story is one of Edna Ferber's lesser works. But I think that Kaufman might have been projecting ahead to his own senior years in the lead character that Chic Sale plays here and O.P. Heggie did originally on the Broadway stage.

By all accounts Kaufman was an irascible old codger, a cross between Gabby Hayes and Monty Woolley. This being Hollywood wit was sacrificed for sentiment. My guess is the original work is a lot more witty than what we have here.

That being said the biggest strength The Expert has is the good chemistry between Sale and little Dickie Moore who was apparently understudying Jackie Cooper. Sale is Earle Foxe's father and he's come to live with Foxe and his wife Lois Wilson. But he forms a bond with young Moore who sells papers and does a little stealing on the side to support his guardians Ralf Harolde and Adrienne Dore.

Two scenes stand out the first being Sale's intrusion into Wilson's women's club meeting, on the order of Elwood Dowd and Harvey's intrusion on his sister's afternoon tea. The second is the final confrontation of Harold and Sale where Sale shows Harolde he's got some moves on the order of Nature Boy Ric Flair.

Don't expect any sparkling wit here going by the authors, but The Expert is a nice sentimental film.

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Release Date:

5 March 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Old Man Minick See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
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