King of the Turf (1939)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Family Drama, Melodrama, Sports Drama  |   Run Time - 88 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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A remake of Racetrack, King of the Turf stars Adolphe Menjou as a seedy, alcoholic bookie with a long-dormant streak of decency. Roger Daniel is a young stable boy whom Menjou befriends and offers advice. The bookie and the stable boy purchase a racehorse, with Daniel training to be a top jockey in order to ride the horse to victory. When Menjou's ex-wife (Dolores Costello) arrives on the scene, she reveals that Daniel is in fact Menjou's son, who'd run away from home to pursue a racetrack career. She begs Menjou not to allow the boy to throw away his life--and not to reveal the truth behind their relationship. The next day, Menjou gets good and drunk and orders Daniel to throw a crucial race. The disillusioned boy does so, is disqualified for life, and turns his back on Menjou. Never realizing the true identity of his fallen idol, Daniel returns to his mother, while Menjou, having done the "right thing," disappears into the crowd.

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Keywords

alcoholism, bookie, ex-wife, father, gambling, horse-racing, jockey, racehorse, stable-boy