PG | | Action, Crime, Drama
An ambitious and nearly insane violent gangster climbs the ladder of success in the mob, but his weaknesses prove to be his downfall.
The murder of Tom Gaffney (Boris Karloff) predicts the similar murder, four years later (1936), of former mobster "Machine Gun" Jack McGurn, who would, like the Tom Gaffney character, be shot to death while bowling.
John 'Johnny' Lovo:
What do you use to think with, an empty beer keg?
When Poppy visits Tony, she holds the flower, but Tony has it in the next shot.
"This picture is an indictment of gang rule in America and of the callous indifference of the government to this constantly increasing menace to our safety and our liberty. Every incident in this picture is the reproduction of an actual occurence, and the purpose of this picture is to demand of the government: "What are you going to do about it?". The government is your government. What are YOU going to do about it?
Due to censorship requirements in several states, a second ending was shot after the film was finished, in which Camonte doesn't try an escape, but is sentenced to death and finally executed on the gallows. This alternate ending was shown only during the original 1932 theatrical run in certain states. All prints, home video, and television versions in current circulation use director Howard Hawks' ending, in which Camonte tries to escape and is shot down. The DVD includes the alternate ending as a bonus feature.