Jeff's Reviews

Thoughts on every movie I've ever seen.

Angels with Dirty Faces (1938)

Directed by Michael Curtiz

Starring James Cagney, Pat O'Brien, Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sheridan


To me, the film supports immorality. It was an act of lying which resolved the story. If the film was made to support immorality, I think it was well-made. If the point of the film was to support morality, then the film is badly made. Kind of preachy.

Great casting. Better looking chicks would make it a perfect cast. It was nice seeing Bogart and Cagney on the screen together. I like Cagney. The kid they got to play him young was amazingly like him. The thug who follows him and gets shot looks like Isaac Lowenkron. Funny, basketball players were creampuffs back then. Good acting, too. The people are real with real emotions, and not just characters, as was often the case in older films. I think I’m a Michael Curtiz fan.

Nice timing for action and cuts. But I just don’t like style of wall-to-wall dialogue without pauses that was so popular in old movies. It’s just so unnatural. We watched an absolutely beautiful print, with blazing whites, solid blacks, nice tonal variance, and fantastic detail. The frame was kinda small, so that might account for the amazing resolution.

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