Each Dawn I Die (1939)

Approved   |    |  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir


Each Dawn I Die (1939) Poster

A corrupt D.A. with political ambitions is angered by news stories implicating him in criminal activity and decides to frame the reporter who wrote them for manslaughter in order to silence him.


7.3/10
2,557

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  • James Cagney and George Raft in Each Dawn I Die (1939)
  • James Cagney in Each Dawn I Die (1939)
  • James Cagney in Each Dawn I Die (1939)
  • James Cagney and George Raft in Each Dawn I Die (1939)
  • James Cagney and George Raft in Each Dawn I Die (1939)
  • James Cagney and George Raft in Each Dawn I Die (1939)

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9 January 2008 | MartinHafer
8
| Full of clichés, but still quite wonderful
This is a great prison film--with lots of unusual twists, a great story and stellar actors. While many of the usual 1930s prison film clichés are definitely present, the overall package is so enjoyable that many will forgive its excesses. I must point out, though, that many modern audiences might laugh a bit at the dialog, but fans of Warner films of the age have come to expect and love these type films.

The movie begins with crusading reporter, Jimmy Cagney, being set up for a crime to stop him from investigating crooked public officials. On this trumped up charge, he is given a hefty prison sentence and is sent to a tough prison. On the way, he meets habitual criminal, George Raft, and they strike up a very bizarre friendship.

At first, Cagney is sure his conviction will be overturned and he's practically a model prisoner. However, after years in jail and no breaks in sight, he agrees to help Raft with a breakout and Cagney's life behind bars gets significantly worse.

Where it all goes from there you'll just need to see for yourself. However, considering that two exceptional tough guy actors head the cast (Cagney and Raft), you know this will be an exciting film--which it certainly is. Now being a Warner product, you know that the prison lingo and action will be a bit hard to believe and you know that, given a chance, Cagney will chew the scenery (he definitely does overact a bit here and there). But considering how entertaining it all is, I can certainly forgive all this. A great film for fans of old time films.

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