Big Town Czar (1939)

Genres - Drama, Mystery  |   Run Time - 61 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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It was once said of actor Barton MacLane that he never spoke when shouting would do. Cast as the title character in Big Town Czar, MacLane is afforded plenty of opportunity for shouting, which he seizes with a vengeance. Working his way up from the tenements, Phil Carey (MacLane) is truly king of the the underworld. Not altogether evil, however, Carey uses a goodly portion of his ill-gotten gains to finance the college education of his beloved younger brother Danny (Tom Brown). But when Danny drops out of school to join the mob himself, Phil is aghast, having hoped to shield the kid from the exigencies of criminal life. It gets worse when Danny is killed during a gang war, which leads inexorably to Phil's own demise. According to the credits, Big Town Czar was based on a story by newspaper columnist Ed Sullivan, who appears in the film as himself (and he never once says "Rilly big shew").

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Keywords

ambition, college, death, false-accusation, family, feud, frame-up, imprisonment, investigation, killing, murder, tenement