Gangster's Boy (November 16, 1938)

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Gangster's Boy
 

Released on November 16, 1938: When an East Coast gangster Knuckles Kelly joins his wife and son in California, his son quickly turns from the most popular boy in high school to the most disliked boy.

Produced by William T. Lackey

Directed by William Nigh

The Actors: Jackie Cooper (Larry Kelly), Robert Warwick (Tim Kelly), Lucy Gilman (Julia Davis), Louise Lorimer (Mrs. Kelly), Tommy Wonder (Bill Davis), Selmer Jackson (Judge Roger Davis), Betty Blythe (Mrs. Davis), Huntley Gordon (Mr. Benson, school principal), Herbert Evans (Stevens the butler), William Gould (District Attorney Edward Jameson), Jack Kennedy (Police Sergeant), Bobby Stone (Salvatore), Hooper Atchley (gangster Sammy Tripp), Joe Devlin (policeman Jim), Byron Foulger (District Attorney's secretary), Jack Gardner (newspaper photographer), Harry Harvey (newspaper reporter), Bradley Metcalfe (Arthur), Edward Peil Sr. (newspaper editor), Buddy Pepper (Bill, Jitterbug dancer)

 

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Sins of the Fathers, and the Siberian Torture

Child and adult movie and television star Jackie Cooper plays the part of Larry Kelly in this morality drama. Larry lives with his mother in a small apartment in California, and although they are not wealthy, he has it all. He is in love with the daughter of a respected Judge, and is best friends with the Judge’s son. Together, he and Bill Davis plan to enter West Point and become the leaders of the next generation of Americans. As the two boys talk about West Point and their future, Larry tells the Judge’s son that they will be running this country in a few years. He goes on to tell Bill that this country has done a lot for them, and it will soon be their turn to do all that they can for this country. Larry is also the best student in the high school, and the best athlete, and the best friend of most of the kids in school. No, Larry and his mom don’t have a lot of money or status in the community, but they have the respect and admiration of everyone they meet . . . . Until Larry’s father surprises them one day.

Larry’s father is Tim Kelly, and back East he is known as Knuckles Kelly, a bootlegger selling illegal beer and whiskey during the prohibition, and then owner of a large legal distillery. He has never been convicted of even jaywalking, but he is suspected of all sorts of crimes during the prohibition period. He has now retired and wants to live a peaceful life with his wife and his son in California and put his past behind him. He buys the biggest mansion in town, which just happens to be next door to the Judge. He buys his son the most expensive convertible on the market, and lavishes his wife and son with the money, love and affection that he could not give them while they were apart. But Knuckles Kelly has a reputation, and when the newspapers tell the city about the notorious gangster that has moved to town, son Larry will be demonized because his father was a bootlegger during prohibition. The good Judge next door will sell his house and forbid his son and daughter to have anything to do with the son of a gangster . . . . The Judge’s family is pure and proper and law-abiding, and they will not soil themselves by associating with the son of a gangster.

So when the accident happens, one might figure that the son of a gangster would turn to the dark side, and the son of a Judge would flee to the light of truth and justice . . . . One might figure that way . . . . One might be wrong . . . . Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the show.

Jackie Cooper, Lucy Gilman and Tommy Wonder in the convertible
Jackie Cooper, Lucy Gilman and Tommy Wonder in the convertible
Huntley Gordon
Huntley Gordon
Huntley Gordon
Huntley Gordon
Jack Kennedy
Jack Kennedy
Jackie Cooper
Jackie Cooper
Jackie Cooper and Huntley Gordon
Jackie Cooper and Huntley Gordon
Jackie Cooper and Louise Lorimer
Jackie Cooper and Louise Lorimer
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper and Lucy Gilman
Jackie Cooper
Jackie Cooper
Jackie Cooper
Jackie Cooper
Louise Lorimer and Jackie Cooper
Louise Lorimer and Jackie Cooper
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Robert Warwick
Louise Lorimer and Selmer Jackson
Louise Lorimer and Selmer Jackson
Lucy Gilman, Betty Blythe and Tommy Wonder
Lucy Gilman, Betty Blythe and Tommy Wonder
Lucy Gilman and Tommy Wonder
Lucy Gilman and Tommy Wonder
Robert Warwick and Edward Peil Sr.
Robert Warwick and Edward Peil Sr.
Robert Warwick and Jack Kennedy
Robert Warwick and Jack Kennedy
Robert Warwick, Jackie Cooper and Selmer Jackson
Robert Warwick, Jackie Cooper and Selmer Jackson
Robert Warwick and Jackie Cooper
Robert Warwick and Jackie Cooper
Robert Warwick and William Gould
Robert Warwick and William Gould
Robert Warwick
Robert Warwick
Selmer Jackson
Selmer Jackson
Selmer Jackson and Huntley Gordon
Selmer Jackson and Huntley Gordon
Tommy Wonder and Lucy Gilman
Tommy Wonder and Lucy Gilman