The Dead End Kids are introduced in their intricate East Side slum, overlooked by the apartments of the rich. Their antics, some funny, some vicious, alternate with subplots: unemployed architect Dave is torn between Drina, sweet but equally poor, and Kay, a rich man's mistress; gangster Baby Face Martin returns to his old neighborhood and finds that nobody is glad to see him. Then violent crime, both juvenile and adult, impacts the neighborhood and its people.Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Samuel Goldwyn paid $165,000 for the rights to Sidney Kingsley's play, which ran eighty-five weeks on Broadway. The review of the play in Hollywood Reporter noted that the play had the potential to make a great film. See more »
Hugh 'Baby Face':
[Hugh doesn't give a street kid money when the kid doesn't deliver]
Nothing for nothing, kid.
See more »
Opening credits prologue: Every street in New York ends in a river. For many years the dirty banks of the East River were lined with the tenements of the poor. Then the rich, discovering that the river traffic was picturesque, moved their houses eastward. And now the terraces of these great apartment houses look down into the windows of the tenement poor. See more »
It's a dead end street in New York that ends at the river. It's here that a wide assortment of characters from different walks of life come together in a pressure cooker setting. Rich, poor, kindhearted and hardhearted all come together. In Dead End, a young woman and her teenage brother struggle to survive. An architect works for a better life. A gangster comes home to visit his mother. A well kept woman chooses between love and wealth. The rich and the poor get glimpses of one another's lives at the waters edge.
This movie draws us into a unique place and time. It gives us intimate portraits into peoples lives. It makes contrasts and it shows similarities between people. It's one of a kind and director William Wyler has given us something special here. Sylvia Sidney, Humphrey Bogart, Marjorie Main, Allen Jenkins, the Dead End Kids and Ward Bond give standout performances. The 1930's atmosphere is palpable. I rate this film 91/100. It's unique and absorbing.
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