6.5/10
1,044
41 user 15 critic

The Big Street (1942)

Little Pinks is in love with a nightclub singer named Gloria. But it is a unrequited love as she does not know that he exists. Pinks is a shy busboy and Gloria only goes out with men who ... See full summary »

Director:

Irving Reis

Writers:

Leonard Spigelgass (screenplay), Damon Runyon (from the Collier's Magazine story "Little Pinks")
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The City of Chicago is gripped by an Axe Murderer. The streets are empty at night as there have been six murders and six people have been caught, but they are lunatics. Only one person has ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Lederer
Stars: Lew Ayres, Laraine Day, Basil Rathbone
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A $50,000 life-insurance sale puts mild-mannered Henry Twinkle on the fast track at Ajax Insurance Company. Now he can marry his girl and climb the corporate ladder -- just as long as the ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Fenton
Stars: Lew Ayres, Rita Johnson, Lloyd Nolan
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Lou Ricarno is a smart guy. His plan is to organize the various gangs in Chicago so that the mugs will not liquidate each other. WIth the success of his leadership, Louie prospers, marries ... See full summary »

Director: Archie Mayo
Stars: Lew Ayres, James Cagney, Charles Judels
Comedy | Romance | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

In 1950s Las Vegas, a gambling rancher and a ballerina discover that some people have luck at cards while others have luck at love.

Director: Roy Rowland
Stars: Dan Dailey, Cyd Charisse, Agnes Moorehead
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Director Jules Dassin (Night and the City) combines the best of film noir, crime caper and romance in this little gem starring Lucille Ball, John Hodiak and Lloyd Nolan.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Lucille Ball, John Hodiak, Lloyd Nolan
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two con artists take a shopgirl under their wing, but complications arise when she begins to fall for a mathematician, disrupting their marrying-for-money scheme.

Director: Rouben Mamoulian
Stars: Henry Fonda, Gene Tierney, Laird Cregar
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Cheated out of his estate by his sadistic uncle, young Benjamin Blake goes to the South Seas to make his fortune so he can return to claim his birthright.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney, George Sanders
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

When a San Francisco priest is murdered, a policeman, who's a close friend, starts an investigation.

Director: Joseph Pevney
Stars: Tony Curtis, Marisa Pavan, Gilbert Roland
Gentleman Jim (1942)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

As bareknuckled boxing enters the modern era, brash extrovert Jim Corbett uses new rules and dazzlingly innovative footwork to rise to the top of the top of the boxing world.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: Errol Flynn, Alexis Smith, Jack Carson
My Gal Sal (1942)
Biography | Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Chronicles the early life of gay nineties-era songwriter Paul Dresser as he outgrows his job as carnival entertainer and moves up into New York society, writing one hit song after another. ... See full summary »

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Rita Hayworth, Victor Mature, John Sutton
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A veteran homicide detective who has witnessed his socialite girlfriend kill her husband sees his inexperienced brother assigned to the case.

Director: Felix E. Feist
Stars: Lee J. Cobb, Jane Wyatt, John Dall
Lured (1947)
Crime | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A serial killer in London is murdering young women he meets through the personal columns of newspapers. He announces each of his murders to the police by sending them a cryptic poem. After ... See full summary »

Director: Douglas Sirk
Stars: George Sanders, Lucille Ball, Charles Coburn
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Henry Fonda ... Little Pinks
Lucille Ball ... Gloria Lyons
Barton MacLane ... Case Ables
Eugene Pallette ... Nicely Nicely Johnson
Agnes Moorehead ... Violette Shumberg
Sam Levene ... Horsethief
Ray Collins ... Professor B
Marion Martin ... Mimi Venus
William T. Orr ... Decatur Reed (as William Orr)
George Cleveland ... Colonel Samuel Venus
Vera Gordon ... Mrs. Lefkowitz
Ozzie Nelson and Orchestra Ozzie Nelson and Orchestra ... Night Club Orchestra
Ozzie Nelson ... Orchestra Leader
Edit

Storyline

Little Pinks is in love with a nightclub singer named Gloria. But it is a unrequited love as she does not know that he exists. Pinks is a shy busboy and Gloria only goes out with men who are loaded. When she tries to dump Case for richer Reed, Case dumps her down the stairs. After months of treatment, she will never walk, but Pinks is the only one who takes care of her. He pays all her bills and sends her flowers with unsigned cards. But to Gloria, he is nothing in her eyes. When she wants to leave New York for Florida, to be with the money set, he takes her. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Take it from me -A GIRLS BEST FRIEND IS A DOLLAR (original-poster) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 September 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Damon Runyon's The Big Street See more »

Filming Locations:

Miami, Florida, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Lucille Ball's favorite of her films. She felt her performance was unjustly ignored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). See more »

Quotes

Gloria Lyons: How's yer tapeworm, sister?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: "Loser's Lane --- the sidewalk in front of Mindy's Restaurant on Broadway-- is not as high-toned a trading center as Wall Street, but the brokers are a lot more colorful. Generally they prefer to put their money on a prizefight or horserace, but when the action slows, anything can happen and it usually does. Tonight, for example, the citizens of the Lane are discussing the latest contest in their usual quiet way --" See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Dick Cavett Show: Episode dated 9 March 1971 (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

Who Knows?
(1942)
Lyrics by Mort Greene
Music by Harry Revel
Performed by Lucille Ball at the New York nightclub (uncredited)
Reprised by her with Ozzie Nelson and Orchestra at the Florida nightclub (Vocals for Miss Ball by Martha Mears) (uncredited)
Played often in the score
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
If you don't like it, then you don't get it...
6 August 2001 | by jacksflicksSee all my reviews

...and that's not the movie's fault. Those who've panned The Big Street and this review say more about themselves than the movie.

Damon Runyon was a beloved chronicler of a microcosm that no longer exists - the street life of New York's Broadway district, during its heyday, when it was known as The Great White Way or The Big Street. You will never see characters like Runyon's anywhere else in literature or film. The closest are perhaps to be found in Dickens, say, the souls who populate the London of Mr. Pickwick.

Other comments, who have been put off by the dialog finding it saccharine or phony, don't understand the special language Runyon uses for his characters, the picaresque vernacular of the small-time Broadway hustlers, promoters, racetrack touts and "professors," whose schemes and rackets are cloaked with highfalutin patter.

Among the steady, low-level service people who interface with these demi-mondes is Little Pinks, "the best busboy in the whole wide world". Pinks (Henry Fonda), has a good heart and the misfortune of falling head-over-heels for a gangster's moll, played against type by Lucille Ball, who has none of the former (good heart) and plenty of the latter (misfortune). Devoted to a fault, Pinks acts as her guardian angel, from her pinnacle, all the way to her pitiful decline and fall. Director Irving Reis, knows how to keep his material from becoming mired in bathos by using Runyon's whimsy and humor and the most delightful character players in Hollywood, from Eugene Palette and Agnes Moorehead to Ray Collins, Louis Beavers and Hans Conried.

"The Big Street" faithfully recreates Runyon's world and its inhabitants. Like all of his stories, it is a parable, and like all parables it teaches a lesson. But the lesson is delivered gently, never preaching. The most moving moment comes in the final scene, at once tragic and triumphant. The tragedy is apparent. But the triumph, the triumph of love over all, is apparently lost on the idiots who have panned this gem.


42 of 57 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 41 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed