6.7/10
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26 user 7 critic

Torrid Zone (1940)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Comedy | 25 May 1940 (USA)
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Plagued by revolutionaries that harass his plantation in a banana republic, fruit company exec Steve Case rehires former nemesis Nick Butler to restore order and profits.

Director:

William Keighley

Writers:

Richard Macaulay (original screenplay), Jerry Wald (original screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Cagney ... Nick Butler
Ann Sheridan ... Lee Donley
Pat O'Brien ... Steve Case
Andy Devine ... Wally Davis
Helen Vinson ... Gloria Anderson
Jerome Cowan ... Bob Anderson
George Tobias ... Rosario
George Reeves ... Sancho
Victor Kilian ... Carlos
Frank Puglia ... Rodriguez
John Ridgely ... Gardner
Grady Sutton ... Sam
Paul Porcasi ... Garcia
Frank Yaconelli Frank Yaconelli ... Lopez (as Frank Yaconnelli)
Dick Botiller ... Hernandez (as Dick Boteler)
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Storyline

Banana Company executive Steve Case on a Caribbean plantation group tries to convince his former co-worker Nick Butler to take over the plantation No 7. But he is on his way to Chicago, to take over a job as a manager for another company himself. He has also troubles with US night-club singer Lee Donley, whom he wants aboard a ship back to the US, and rebel Rosario. He is able to get Nick to the plantation, but is he able to keep him there or will he leave it in a few days with Gloria, the wife of the former executive of No 7, Mr. Anderson ? Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

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Taglines:

"DADDY, WHAT MAKES THE TROPICS SO HOT?" Reason No. 3:O'Brien The Gut Who Chases Hurricanes Up North!. See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

25 May 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Zona Tórrida See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

James Cagney doesn't appear until after twenty-minutes into the film. See more »

Goofs

In the gunfight scene between Butler's group and Rosario's group, Rosario shoots Butler and Butler appears to be grabbing his right arm as he goes down. In the next shot, he is now tending to his wound on his left arm. Later in the scene, after they catch Rosario, Rosario bumps Butler's hat as he walks by. See more »

Quotes

Lee Donley: [to Case] Mister, the stork that brought you must have been a vulture.
See more »

Connections

Version of Blowing Wild (1953) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles
(1919) (uncredited)
Music by Nat Vincent, James Kendis and James Brockman
Lyrics by John W. Kellette
Played on harmonica by Andy Devine three times
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Oomph in the Tropics
18 April 2006 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This was the final film for James Cagney and Pat O'Brien who in my opinion invented the buddy film. O'Brien would be leaving Warner Brothers the following year and the two of them would not get together in another film until Ragtime in 1981 in which they both had small parts.

It's a typical fast paced comedy for both of them, they were incapable of doing anything else together. O'Brien slowed down when he was in a clerical collar and Cagney when he was doing a nostalgic film, but together the lines go at light speed.

Except when Ann Sheridan is concerned. Director Bill Keighley always slowed the pace for Sheridan because he didn't want anyone to miss some of her tart sayings. She has some of the best lines ever in her career. Typical being when she tells O'Brien that the stork that brought him must have been a vulture. Or when she's constantly one upping Helen Vinson who made a career of playing the other woman.

O'Brien is the hardnosed manager of a tropical fruit company and he's in big trouble because a local Sandinista type bandit leader, George Tobias, is wrecking his operations. Another distraction is Ann Sheridan whose redheaded beauty he figures is too much of a distraction to the men where redheads are scarce. Notice how O'Brien tells the local authorities what to do. More truth than humor in that situation.

He's desperate enough to hire back his number one troubleshooter James Cagney who gets the job done, but always gets himself in a jackpot where women are concerned. He's taken a fancy to Sheridan and she him.

A couple of other reviewers have pointed out the obvious similarities between this and The Front Page. The first film version of that classic play is the one where Pat O'Brien made his screen debut as the ace reporter. However he did it on Broadway in the role of the editor which he's playing here.

Perhaps this might be better described as another version of His Girl Friday. I can't say remake because both films came out at the same time. Sheridan comes off the same way as Rosalind Russell does in His Girl Friday, but Keighley also wants to accent her sensuality as well as her sharp tongue. He succeeds admirably because no woman in their previous films quite put off both Cagney and O'Brien the way Sheridan does.

The woman sure had oomph.


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