6.9/10
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Boots Malone (1952)

Approved | | Drama, Sport | 4 July 1952 (Sweden)
Boots Malone is jockey's agent and a bit of a wheeler-dealer who went from living at the Ritz to living in a room at the stables when his star jockey was killed in an accident. After nearly... See full summary »

Director:

William Dieterle
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Cast

Cast overview:
William Holden ... Boots Malone
Stanley Clements ... Stash Clements
Basil Ruysdael ... Preacher Cole
Carl Benton Reid ... John Williams
Ralph Dumke Ralph Dumke ... Beckett
Ed Begley ... Howard Whietehead
Hugh Sanders ... Matson
Harry Morgan ... Quarter Horse Henry (as Henry Morgan)
Ann Lee Ann Lee ... Mrs. Elizabeth Gibson
Anthony Caruso ... Joe
Billy Pearson Billy Pearson ... Eddie Koch - Jockey
Johnny Stewart ... Thomas Gibson Jr. aka The Kid
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Storyline

Boots Malone is jockey's agent and a bit of a wheeler-dealer who went from living at the Ritz to living in a room at the stables when his star jockey was killed in an accident. After nearly three years, he has yet to find a replacement for him. Along with his cronies at the track, he manages to buy a horse that's a bit of a sleeper. Their hopes of cashing in big take a positive turn when Boots decides to train an eager young man, who turns out to be a runaway from a rich family, as a jockey. When gangsters tell Boots to throw the race in favor of another horse, he faces a major dilemma. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of a boy who left home... and a stumble bum who never had one!

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 July 1952 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Tommy macht das Rennen See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Goofs

When the climactic race is finished, there is a posted finish time of 3:40. Shortly after the scene cuts back to the standings board, the time is now at 3:46. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Realistic Racetrack movie
7 May 2004 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Personally, I enjoy two atmospheres in life. Ballparks and racetracks. Baseball movies are usually about individual efforts, I've never seen one that captures the atmosphere of the game itself. But Boots Malone better than any other film I've seen about racing until last year's Seabiscuit, captures the whole flavor of the track itself.

You can literally smell the manure (and I don't mean that as a comment on the film) when you watch this thing. The characters in and around the track are Damon Runyon like, but not romanticized in the way he usually did.

There just the everyday folk you find there, working hard at something they love.

A lot of the movie depends on the chemistry of the four principal players. That this film has in abundance. Bill Holden as the cynical jockey's agent, Stanley Clements as the over the hill jockey who's now an exercise rider, Basil Ruysdael as the owner of a claiming horse with hidden promise and finally Johnny Stewart as the naive teenage kid who runs away from boarding school to hang around the track, all of them work very well in the scenes they have that's about half the film.

Bill Holden had three years earlier established himself as an actor to be reckoned with in Sunset Boulevard. No more nice guy parts, he's a tough cynical character. His Boots Malone is like Joe Gillis, a cynical survivor, also like Sefton in Stalag 17. Unlike those other two characters, we're shown the reason for Malone's cynicism and alienation, his wife and kid were killed several years earlier in a car crash.

The kid, Tommy Gibson played by Johnny Stewart, get to Malone. Bit by bit as Holden shows him the ropes around the racetrack community they develop a strong bond. Some of the best scenes in the film are those with Holden teaching Stewart the fundamentals of the jockey trade.

Johnny Stewart should have had a major film career. He had charisma and good acting skills in abundance. After this he made one more film and then left Hollywood to resume acting on the Broadway stage. I would love to know whatever happened to him.

I love this film very much and if you love the racetrack this film is a must.


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