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COMPLETE FILMOGRAPHY WITH SYNOPSIS
Cast (feature film)
In Coaltown, Pennsylvania, miner Coke Mason hopes to better himself, buy a radio store, and marry Rose Warren. His gambler brother George thinks Coke can be more successful as a boxer, knowing that when he fights he's consumed with a murderous rage that makes him an "iron man." Seeing dollar signs in Rose's eyes, Coke reluctantly agrees, though he's fearful of the "killer instinct" that makes him a knockout success in the ring...and brings him the booing hatred of the fans. Will Coke throw off his personal demon before he kills someone?
An actress''''s rising career is threatened when she finds a dead gangster in her apartment.
Compilation of comic scenes and musical numbers from RKO films.
A crook on the lam poses as a psychiatrist.
A country-western band tries to raise money to rebuild their small-town church.
A young boxer slugs his way out of the slums only to fall prey to organized crime.
To quote a Marine D.I. in San Diego or John Wayne in several movies, "Listen up, we ain't going to plow this ground twice." In 1947, Hal Roach made a film called "Curly", which was an expanded version of 1930's "Our Gang" short "Teacher's Pet", with Frances Rafferty and Larry Olsen taking the roles played by June Marlowe and Jackie Cooper in the original short. Hal Roach also made a film called "The Fabulous Joe", basically about a drunk, a talking dog, gangsters and Marie Wilson running around in her skivvies. The two films, intended as bottom-half of a double feature, were released about two weeks apart, with "Curly" going out first. "The Fabulous Joe" came about two weeks later. At the same time, the two films were stitched together and offered, with the combined running time of 112 minutes, to exhibitors who didn't play double features. The film listed on this page, "Hal Roach's Comedy Carnival", is the result. "Curly" was an attempt by Hal Roach, who no longer owned the rights to "Our Gang" (aka "The Little Rascals") to create a version of "Our Gang" with a new set of kids, which would be known as "Curly and His Gang", and would be feature-length films in Cinecolor. "Curly" was the first one in the series and was followed in 1948 by "Who Killed "Doc" Robbin" with the same kids from "Curly" playing the same roles. Later, "Curly" and "Who Killed 'Doc' Robbin" were packaged together as "The Adventures of Curly and His Gang" for theatres and later sold to televison, and there are sources who keep adding the adult cast from the "Doc Robbin" film (Don Castle, Virginia Grey, Claire DuBrey, Paul Hurst and others)incorrectly to the cast of "Curly." The fun part of "Hal Roach's Comedy Carnival" is that it is comprised of two films that are about as opposite of each other as films can be. "The Fabulous Joe" is a screwball comedy filled with double entendre dialogue and scenes and as "Adult" as a film of the 40's could be and still get PCA approval. "Curly", as mentioned, is "Our Gang" updated and in color.
George McAllister (John Carroll), the black sheep of a wealthy family who has squandered his share of the family inheritance, and lives in constant jealousy, hatred and resentment of his half-brother Barry (Robert Paige), who has been supporting him. George gets his girl friend, Carlotta Duval (Vera Ralston), a job as Barry's nurse with the plan of eventually marrying him. She does, but instead of going ahead with the original plan or getting rid of Barry, inheriting his money and marrying George, she finds that she is really in love with Barry.
Charles Stewart, the "Pilgrim" owner's playboy son, finds himself shanghaied on his father's ship commanded by cruel Captain Thompson. When scurvy breaks out he leads a mutiny and is slapped in irons. Floggings and torture abound.
Cornelia and Emily, at college in the early 1920s, have triangle trouble with their beaus. Their affairs become entangled with those of a chance-met, kindly bootlegger. Much of the humor derives from pre-Roaring Twenties naivity.
A con artist falls for the rich widow he's trying to fleece.
Eleven Gilbert & Sullivan numbers are melded within the murder-mystery plot of "Girl on the Spot", with a result that either G&S and/or the plot are always seemingly on stage-wait or in the wings awaiting a cue. Lois Collier is the girl-on-the-spot of the title because she was on the scene of a murder. The police conclude she didn't do it and they use her to set a trap for the real killer, a G&S addict, by financing a Broadway production starring Collier. The police department evidently found the money for financing a Broadway show under "Misc.Expenses" in the city budget.
Fanciful biography of songwriter Cole Porter, who rose from high society to find success on Tin Pan Alley.
An unemployed actor tries to save a young innocent from greedy relations.
Joe Davis Sr., headliner at a big nightclub, is visited by medical student son Joe Jr., who to Dad's chagrin wants to be a crooner, and soon comes between Dad and his girlfriend Claire. So glamorous dancer Bonnie is enlisted to distract Junior. Which does Bonnie want more, the fur coat or true love? Plot is a framework for numerous Ziegfeld style stage productions.
Bill wants to join the Army, but he's 4F so he asks a wizard to help him, but the wizard has slight problems with his history knowlege, so he sends Bill everywhere in history, but not to WWII.
A young girl goes to New York to find a bandleader who has stolen all the songs she wrote and is passing them off as his own. She soon meets and falls in love with a struggling young songwriter who has his own problems.
Susan is about to be married, but the wedding may get called off after her fiancee summons three former beaus. Each reveals a different portrait of Susan: one describes her as a naive country girl who reluctantly becomes an actress, another paints a picture of a gay party girl and and the third describes a serious intellectual. Which one is the real Susan?
A man's wild moneymaking schemes leave his wife to raise their family.
When Archie, the proprietor of the neighborhood bar discovers that one of his regulars, Michael O'Malley, owner of a record company is going broke, he realizes that many of his regulars will soon be unemployed and therefore, unable to pay their tab at the tavern. Archie immediately begins recruiting
The boys are detectives working in Mexico. Laurel happens to resemble a famous matador who has disappeared, and he is enlisted to replace him in the bullring.
Sal comes to the Barbary Coast from New England to find out who murdered her brother. She gets a job signing in Dude's saloon, falls in love with Dude, then wonders if he might be involved in the murder.
In the gay '90s, cardsharps take over a Mississippi riverboat from a kindly captain. Their first act is to change the showboat into a floating gambling house. A ham actor and his bumbling sidekick try to devise a way to help the captain regain ownership of the vessel.
Song-filled look behind the scenes of vaudeville, based on the lives of Nora Bayes and Jack Norworth.
Radio writers have big plans for a woman singer.
A Navy doctor fights to help wounded sailors escape the Japanese during World War II.
A surprise visit from his brother almost blows an undercover agent out of the water.
A police detective falls in love with the woman whose murder he's investigating.
Twin sisters Rosemary and Susie Allison are successful nightclub performers. Their act is about to come to a close when serious-minded Rosemary announces she's joining the Waves. Fun-loving Susie decides to enlist also, especially after she learns that crooner Johnny Cabot has just been drafted by the Navy.
The singing/dancing Angel sisters, Nancy (Dorothy Lamour), Bobby (Betty Hutton), Josie (Diana Lynn) and Patti (Mimi Chandler), aren't interested in performing together, and this plays havoc with the plans of Pop Angel (Raymond Walburn) to buy a soy bean farm. They do accept an offer of ten dollars to sing at a dubious night club on the edge of town where a band led by Happy Marshall (Fred MacMurray) is playing. Bobby takes the ten dollars and runs it up to $190 at the dice table. Happy hits on Nancy but she rebuffs him. He doesn't have the money to pay his band and borrows the gambling winnings from Bobby on the pretext that he will give her a job with his band. Bobby discovers the next day that Happy has hastily departed for New York. The girls follow to a night club where he is working and, after an audition, the manager is willing to give Happy a contract if the girls will sing with his band.
A flighty beauty marries a stockbroker for convenience and almost ruins both their lives.
An aviation engineer and a government secretary are thrown together by the war effort.
Two bumbling plumbers are hired by a socialite to fix a leak. A case of mistaken identity gets the pair an invitation to a fancy party and an entree into high society. As expected, things don't go too smoothly.
A Broadway producer finds fame with his new act -- a dancing caterpillar.
Entertainers struggle to save a failing nightclub.
An aspiring actress pretends to be a beloved stage star''''s daughter.
In this true story, Frank Cavanaugh proves himself as a football coach and a World War I hero.
Military officers compete for the same woman while training pilots for war.
An heiress experiences a variety of strange goings on when she goes to collect her inheritance.
Marshals Nevada and Sandy are after Scully and his gang who have been robbing stage-coaches. The Texas Kid is part of the gang and Sandy thinks he is bad but Nevada knows him and thinks he may be good.
The problem with the mystery stories concocted by Jason Cord (Milton Berle) is that he can never figure out who's guilty. Stuck, as usual, he takes his latest unfinished "who-dunit" to the office of his wife, Patricia Cord (Mary Beth Hughes), whose boss, Brennan (Reginald Denny), doesn't know she is married. Hidden in a closet, Jason overhears Brennan and his partners discussing a situation which exactly parallels his new story. He steps out when the discussion reaches the point of his story's current progress and, seeing a chance of finding an ending to his story, offers to make a suicide look like a murder. He soon finds himself the central figure in a front-page murder trial before he proves the supposed suicide to have been an actual murder - committed by one of the victim's partners.
A Supreme Court justice on vacation takes on crooked small-town politicians.
When a reporter exposes her past in burlesque, a musical theatre star sets out for revenge.
A young songwriter leaves his Kentucky home to try to make it in New Orleans. Eventually he winds up in New York, where he sells his songs to a music publisher, but refuses to sell his most treasured composition: "Dixie." The film is based on the life of Daniel Decatur Emmett, who wrote the classic song "Dixie."
Baseball legend Lou Gehrig faces a crippling disease at the height of his success.
Idiot soldiers on leave get themselves trapped in an all-women''''s boarding house.
When he's framed for robbery, a reformed thief takes off to find the real culprit.
A female surgeon pretends to be a nurse so she can serve on the front line.
An old freighter single-handedly takes on a Nazi war fleet.
Radio star Gene Autry (Gene Autry) returns to his home town of Gold Ridge at the request of his old friend Pop Harrison (Forrest Taylor), who wants Gene to straighten out his wayward son, Tex Harrison (James Seay), whose gambling and drinking threaten to bankrupt the rodeo organization which he heads. News photographer Clementine "Clem" Benson (Fay McKenzie) and reporter Hack Hackett (Chick Chandler) are ordered to follow Gene. The group finds quarters at the "Bar Nothing" dude ranch, winter quarters for Tex's rodeo group, and Tex soon tangles with Hackett in a quarrel. The latter wins a thousand-dollar bag of gold from Sunrise (Olin Holwin), a miner who has earned his stake digging in the supposedly abandoned mine beneath Gold Ridge. Hackett spots a fugitive Chicago racketeer, Crowley (George Douglas), who is hiding out from the mob he has double-crossed. During a "Frontier Days" celebration, Hackett is killed and the sheriff (Hal Price) orders an investigation of all the guns of the performers, who were using blanks, and Tex's gun is found with live ammunition and he is charged with murder because of the earlier quarrel. Gene suspects Crowley as he learns of his real background, but the true killer is neither Tex nor Crowley.
Kathy lives in a cramped New York flat with her father Madden Thomas, a celebrated actor brought down by drink. Lame from an early age and feeling trapped with her father in her small world, Kathy is delighted to meet fellow tenant Robert. When Madden is offered the lead in a new King Lear and Robert lands a composing job in Hollywood, better times seem for a while to beckon.
Opposites distract when a sophisticated political columnist falls for a sportswriter.
A chronicle of songwriter Paul Dresser as he moves up into New York society.
A hired killer dodges police while tracking down the enemy agents who tried to frame him.
A mystery writer and his wife stumble on a murder in their new apartment.
A stuffy boss tries to steal his secretary from her sailor boyfriend.
Tom Harmon (ol' # 98 for the Michigan Wolverines, husband of actress Elyse Knox and father of Mark Harmon and Kelly Harmon)took a back seat to no one on the football field (except the Minnesota Gophers) or, later, in the broadcast booth, but, on film, he managed to find himself in two of the all-time bad sports movies..."The Spirit of West Point" and "Harmon of Michigan." The latter, if it had been a true-life biography of Tom Harmon, might have made a passable film but after a short prologue, narrated by sports writer Bill Henry who is not the same as actor William Henry, that semi-recaps Harmon's football-playing days at the University of Michigan, it quickly develops into a mess that indicates the director and writers used the technical adviser, Coach Jeff Cravath, only to put plays on the blackboard. Once Harmon,(supposedly playing himself but the character he plays here has more character flaws than the law allows), graduates from Michigan, he marries his college sweetheart Peggy Adams (Anita Louise), turns up his nose at the prospect of playing professional football---a poor-paying and not-that-well respected job in 1941---and starts a vagabond tour of coaching tank-water colleges. Authenicity went out the window when the narration ended, as did any kind of time tracking, as everything that follows seems to happen in a single football season. Tom takes an assistant coach job at a cow-pasture college under Jimmy Wayburn (William Hall) and lasts one day before Wayburn fires him. Then he signs to play for a College All-Star team doing exhibition games against pro teams, but his team-mates, hacked because Tom gets star billing, lay down on him and he gets smacked down hard on every play. One of the leaders willing to let Harmon get slaughtered is old Michigan teammate Forrest Evashevski (playing himself), a life-long friend in real life and Godfather to Mark Harmon and a long-time respected coach at the University of Iowa. Harmon wins the game by himself, but decides this isn't his cup of tea. He hangs around the house a few weeks, then gets a job as an assistant under old-time coach Pop Branch at a college that has three buidings on campus and a football stadium seating 100,000 fans. He helps Pop win a few games (still ticking along in what appears to be the same fall football season), but the alumni at Webster College are tired of losing, fire their coach and hire Harmon away from Pop. Harmon takes over the Webster team in mid-season and becomes the all-time example of a hard-ass coach willing to win at any cost, including installing a screen-pass play that depends on an illegal blcoking scheme---the Flying Wedge---to make it work. His Webster team begins to thump their opponents by large scores, usually leaving the other team battered and bloodied by the use of the illegal blocking scheme. They win four or five games which, based on the writers time scheme, would have them playing 20 games a season in what was then a nine-and-ten game season. Plus, the press and other coaches around and about, are up in arms about Harmon's tatics, but the jerks refereeing the games evidently haven't read the rule book nor the newspapers and throw no penalty flags against his team. Well, one referee does once, but he never officiated nor had lunch in that town again. It, by any reasonable calendar must now be July of the next year in a season that should have ended in December, and hard-case Harmon's team is going up against Pop's team (where Harmon coached earlier in this never-ending season) and Pop drops by and tells Tom he ain't all that fond of Tom's coaching methods, but Tom poo-pahs him off, and then sends his team out and they gleefully dismantle Pop's fair-playing team by 109-0. But Webster's quarterback Freddie Davis (Stanley Brown) suffers a concussion running a play Harmon calls just to run up the score even higher---Harmon evidently didn't read the script because nobody using their own name would want this character perceived
Gangster Deak Foster (Victory Jory) and his three henchmen, Brains Moran (Maxie Rosenbloom), Ears-to-the-Ground Hinkle (Horace MacMahon) and Photofinish Farris (George McKay), take over what they think is a night club run by a rival, Stud Rocco (Ralf Harold), only to discover it is a nursery run by Irene Perry (Rochelle Hudson). All fall under the benign influence to the point where the three henchmen go to night school to be educated and Deak falls in love with Julie.
Steel-worker brothers compete for the same woman.
A celebrity promoter is accused of murdering one of his clients.
Believing her husband to be dead, a flyer's wife bargains with his former love to adopt the woman's baby.
Young man from Kansas (Edwards) goes to New York to work for his tycoon-hero (Barbier). His superiors won't listen to his ideas about business, but the boss and his daughter (Joyce) do.
A braggart masquerades as a primitive throwback.
The Irish-American detective Shayne is hired by a racetrack bigwig (Kolb) to guard his compulsive gambler daughter (Weaver). When her boyfriend is murdered, Shayne gets blamed.
Young Henry Aldrich would like to "win" a trip to Alaska. But in order to participate, he first has to put up $100. The whole matter sounds awfully fishy. Henry and his pal Dizzy go into the soap business. Their attempt to raise money turns into a disaster when they get the soap formula wrong. But the Alaska trip is really on the level. It's been organized by Sylvanus Q. Sattherwaite, businessman and philanthropist. But Henry still doesn't have the money...
The members of a traveling jazz band try to keep their leader from drinking himself to death.
The investigation of a publishing tycoon's dying words reveals conflicting stories about his scandalous life.
A reformed jewel thief fights to clear his name when he's framed for murder.
Dagwood brings home a pedigreed Great Dane which an important company client wants and which Blondie enters in the big dog show. A highlight of this film is the canine burping display.
A shipwrecked woman is rescued just in time for her husband''''s re-marriage.
US-to-Central-America freight service pilot (Nolan) marries radio broadcaster (Bari) and promises to take a desk job but the urge for adventure is too strong.
A sister act splits up over love.
The action takes place in Ephesus in ancient Asia Minor, and the concerns The efforts of two boys from Syracuse, Anthipholus and his servant Dromio, to find their long-lost twins who, for reason of plot confusion, are also named Anthipholus and Dromio. Complications arise when the wife of the Ephesians, Adriana and her servant Luce, mistake the two strangers for their husband, though the couples eventually get sorted out after Adriana's sister Luciana and the Syracuse Antipholus admit their love
A man involved in a crime (Nolan) kills his key witness by mistake and resigns himself to death. He changes his name so as not to harm his family. The law is not content with his explanation, however.
A man-shy fashion editor pretends to be married until a suitor claims to be her husband.
Sailor (Hall) is going to marry his girlfriend (Kelly) when he returns, but she becomes foster mother to baby whose parents are accidentally killed. The baby is accidentally left on board a visiting battleship.
Thomas Edison fights to turn his dreams into reality.
A London artist struggles to complete one last painting before going blind.
A runaway tycoon and his sailor buddy try to con their way through the South Seas.
A mild-mannered insurance salesman gets mixed up with gangsters.
Two wrongly convicted men are sentenced to death.
A magician turns detective to investigate murder and a phony seance.
When he cures a circus elephant, a country doctor gets an unwanted friend.
A crooked politician tries to stop construction of the first intercontinental railroad.
Bickering husband-and-wife stage stars are manipulated into a break-up for publicity purposes.
A nightclub dancer marries into society and has to contend with her jealous sister-in-law.
A medical school graduate must choose between a small-town practice and a big-city internship.
A country girl follows the man who jilted her to the big city, where she finds two new suitors.
Racketeer Steve Recka (Akim Tamiroff), art patron and political power-maker, rules his town and Madame Lan Ying (Anna May Wong), his beautiful Oriental friend and hostess (read:mistress), with an iron hand. He meets Margaret Van Kase (Gail Patrick), a socialite not impressed by his power nor his wealth, having no money herself, and Steve makes frantic efforts to win her and turns away from the loyal Lin Yang. Margaret ignores him as she plans to wed Philip Easton (Harvey Stephens), a penniless bond salesman. The furious Recka, poses as a friend to Easton, while planning to ruin him. His henchmen kidnap Easton when he is carrying a large assignment of bonds, and he is branded as a runaway thief. The only doubters are Margaret and Police Inspector Brandon (Lloyd Nolan), who knows Recka's methods and suspects foul play. Easton is found in an abandoned house and arrested as the gangsters have taken the bonds and tipped the police where to find him. Recka offers to clear Easton if Margaret will become his bride and, while her hatred for Recka is intense, her love for Easton is greater and she consents. Recka, however, has reckoned without Lan Ying.
Rival newsreel photographers vie for scoops and a beautiful lady flyer.
An irresponsible test pilot's wife and best friend try to get him to grow up.
A talented 10-year-old singing prodigy, Foxine LaRue (Edith Fellows), who is only slightly less artificial and theatrical than her name, is pushed into vaudeville by her stage-mother mama, Gert LaRue (Margaret Irving), who is even more artificial and theatrical than her name. Foxine's pretty and older sister, Mary LaRue (Julie Bishop as Jacqueline Wells) makes sacrifices to support the trio. Al Partridge (Scott Kolk as Scott Colton), a hollywood agent becomes interested in Mary and takes the family trio to Hollywood in the hopes of Foxine getting into the movies. After several incidents by the rowdy Foxine on the train, and later at International Studios, Foxine is further from being in the movies than she was in New York. Gert decides that a "hoax" kidnapping is just the ticket to get Foxine the publicity to land a studio contract. That night Foxine dresses as a boy, disarranges her room, leaves a "ransom note" and hops a freight train. The police arrive the next morning and hear Mary accuse Al and Gert of staging the kidnapping, and they are arrested. Foxine leaves the train several hundred miles away and takes shelter with the good-natured Pascual Orozco (Leo Carrillo) and his family. The arrested pair are released when the police receive another ransom note (sent by Foxine.)
A freak accident gives a fading actress a huge publicity push.
A law professor signs on as special prosecutor to take on the mob.
When a small-town girl is diagnosed with a rare, deadly disease, an ambitious newspaper man turns her into a national heroine.
A silent Western star has trouble adjusting to the coming of sound.
An Australian opera singer hires a husband so she can work in the U.S.
When a notorious gangster gets out of prison, he vows revenge on the wife who left him.
An employee of an express shipping service helps to provide people with the supplies they need.
When a border patrolman catches their spoiled daughter smoking in a no-smoking area, parents hire him to watch over her. She then runs over to Mexico and gets involved with jewel thieves and he has to go save her.
By the time daughter (Deane) and son-in-low (Downs) have their second child the mother-in-law (Gateson) learns not to be so domineering.
A notorious gambler who is short of money want his daughter to marry a British young man, who has plenty of money. At first she obies, but then she falls in love to a poor, young American.
An eccentric millionaire hires a gold digger to run his business.
A secretary gets the glamour treatment to win her boss'''' heart.
A carnival con man tries to pass off his daughter as heiress to a great estate.
A decoding expert tangles with enemy spies.
A news reporter turns the woman he loves into a media star after she rejects an aristocrat''s marriage proposal.
When her fiancée Buck Gonzales is killed, dance hall queen Cleo Borden inherits his wealth. Included are oil wells supervised by British engineer Carrington, whom Cleo sets out to win by becoming a "lady." She races her horse in Buenos Aires, gains social position by loveless marriage to bankrupt Colton, and even sings in an opera. But when she meets Carrington again, he's become the Earl of Stratton...
A steel worker rises to the boardroom but longs for his former life.
An actress''''s manager tries to keep her from leaving the stage for marriage.
Years after being pushed out of her husbands life, a woman befriends her long lost son.
After Michael Carter's fiancée commits suicide, Michael vows to seek revenge on his wealthy family, who sabotaged their marriage. He drives across the country angrily, and lands up at a saloon, where he is shot by an Indian, Pete. Pete's girlfriend, Tonita nurses Michael's wound and falls in love with him. Michael realizes this, proposes marriage to Tonita - a perfect revenge for his prejudice family. They marry and he takes her to New York, in full Indian dress hoping to embarrass the family. The press and society mock the Carters - to Michael's delight. Tonita's confused as to why Michael doesn't want to consummate their marriage. At a coming out party for Tonita, set up by Diana (Michael's sister), Tonita's a big hit. Michael becomes angry for his family has "won". Tonita realizes the true reason for their marriage, and finds comfort with Bob, Diana's lover. Diana catches Tonita and Bob together and kills Bob, but, Tonita takes the blame and is arrested, for this is the perfect revenge on Michael. Now, Michael realizes he loves Tonita....
A promising surgeon discovers his hospital is run by gangsters.
Tillie and Augustus Winterbottom are thought to be missionaries when they arrive to find Phineas Pratt trying cheat the Sheridans out of her father's inheritance, including a ferry franchise and a boat. The only way to keep the franchise is to win a race against Pratt's boat.
A humble clerk pretends to be a millionaire and gets mixed up in a yachting race.
While running a hotel in Florida, three clowns get caught up in the search for stolen jewels.
Seven people awaken to find themselves on a boat in the ocean. After much delibertion they soon come to the conclusion that the ocean has no end. They also have no idea how they got on the boat or who the others are. Soon, however, they discover the horrible truth: They have all died recently, and are on the journey to be judged as worthy of Heaven or Hell.
In this short film, a group of musician stable hands race a horse in the Hollywood Derby at Santa Anita race track.
In this short film, mobsters convince a meat packing company employee to help them hijack a truckload of beef.
In this short film, an orphaned horse-trainer''''s daughter has made a bond with a horse that needs her presence to win races. Vitaphone Release 8071-8072.
This film presents a dramatization of Patrick Henry's speech before the Virginia legislature in which he argues for colonial independence.
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