Thirties Gangster Films

by karljhickey14 | created - 03 Sep 2018 | updated - 1 month ago | Public
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1. The Public Enemy (1931)

Not Rated | 83 min | Crime, Drama

A young hoodlum rises up through the ranks of the Chicago underworld, even as a gangster's accidental death threatens to spark a bloody mob war.

Director: William A. Wellman | Stars: James Cagney, Jean Harlow, Edward Woods, Joan Blondell

Votes: 16,302

2. Little Caesar (1931)

Not Rated | 79 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A small-time criminal moves to a big city to seek bigger fortune.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Glenda Farrell, William Collier Jr.

Votes: 10,941

3. Scarface (1932)

PG | 93 min | 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.

Directors: Howard Hawks, Richard Rosson | Stars: Paul Muni, Ann Dvorak, Karen Morley, Osgood Perkins

Votes: 23,200

4. 'G' Men (1935)

Approved | 85 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

It's the early days of the F.B.I. - federal agents working for the Department of Justice. Though they've got limited powers - they don't carry weapons and have to get local police approval ... See full summary »

Director: William Keighley | Stars: James Cagney, Margaret Lindsay, Ann Dvorak, Robert Armstrong

Votes: 3,220

5. The Roaring Twenties (1939)

Not Rated | 106 min | Action, Crime, Drama

Three men attempt to make a living in Prohibitionist America after returning home from fighting together in World War I.

Director: Raoul Walsh | Stars: James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart, Priscilla Lane, Gladys George

Votes: 11,581

6. Born Reckless (1930)

Passed | 82 min | Crime, Drama, War

Hoping to use the publicity to get re-elected, a judge sentences a notorious gangster to fight in the war.

Director: John Ford | Stars: Edmund Lowe, Catherine Dale Owen, William Harrigan, Marguerite Churchill

Votes: 301

7. City Streets (1931)

Passed | 83 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Man joins a gang to free his girlfriend from prison.

Director: Rouben Mamoulian | Stars: Gary Cooper, Sylvia Sidney, Paul Lukas, William 'Stage' Boyd

Votes: 1,118

9. Czar of Broadway (1930)

79 min | Crime, Drama

A reporter is assigned to do a story on a notorious racketeer.

Director: William James Craft | Stars: John Wray, Betty Compson, John Harron, Claud Allister

Votes: 10

10. The Doorway to Hell (1930)

Passed | 78 min | Crime, Drama

Despite his efforts to go straight, a young gangster keeps falling back into crime.

Director: Archie Mayo | Stars: Lew Ayres, James Cagney, Charles Judels, Dorothy Mathews

Votes: 844

12. Hide-Out (1930)

59 min | Drama

A bootlegger on the run from the law hides out on a college campus. He disguises himself as a student, and soon becomes the school's star athlete and most popular man on campus.

Director: Reginald Barker | Stars: James Murray, Kathryn Crawford, Carl Stockdale, Lee Moran

Votes: 8

13. Hook Line and Sinker (1930)

Passed | 75 min | Comedy, Romance

Two fast-talking insurance salesmen meet Mary, who is running away from her wealthy mother, and they agree to help her run a hotel that she owns. When they find out that the hotel is run ... See full summary »

Director: Edward F. Cline | Stars: Bert Wheeler, Robert Woolsey, Dorothy Lee, Ralf Harolde

Votes: 274

15. Man Trouble (1930)

Passed | 85 min | Crime, Drama, Music

A hard-boiled nightclub owner saves a beautiful young girl from drowning. He promptly falls in love with her, but she prefers a younger, more-genteel lover.

Director: Berthold Viertel | Stars: Milton Sills, Dorothy Mackaill, Kenneth MacKenna, Sharon Lynn

Votes: 8

16. The Hole in the Wall (1929)

73 min | Drama, Mystery

Mrs. Ramsey sent Jean Oliver to prison on a false charge. To get even, Jean (disguised as Madame Mystera) plans to kidnap her daughter and turn her into a thief. Love entanglements with a ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Florey | Stars: Claudette Colbert, Edward G. Robinson, David Newell, Nellie Savage

Votes: 112

17. Alibi (1929)

TV-PG | 91 min | Crime

Chick Williams, a prohibition gangster, rejoins his mob soon after being released from prison. When a policeman is murdered during a robbery, he falls under suspicion. The gangster took ... See full summary »

Director: Roland West | Stars: Chester Morris, Harry Stubbs, Mae Busch, Eleanor Griffith

Votes: 587

18. The Night Ride (1930)

Passed | 60 min | Crime, Drama

Just after newsman Rooker and Ruth Kearns are married he covers a double murder during a bank robbery. Cigarettes at the scene implicate gangster Tony Garotta. Garotta kidnaps Rooker and another reporter, intending to kill them.

Director: John S. Robertson | Stars: Joseph Schildkraut, Barbara Kent, Edward G. Robinson, Harry Stubbs

Votes: 16

19. Outside the Law (1930)

79 min | Crime, Drama

Fingers is planning a half-million-dollar bank robbery in gang boss Cobra Collins' territory. Fingers' moll Connie tries to bluff Cobra into thinking the hit won't be for another week when the call comes through saying it's now.

Director: Tod Browning | Stars: Mary Nolan, Edward G. Robinson, Owen Moore, Rockliffe Fellowes

Votes: 89

20. The Pay-Off (1930)

Passed | 65 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A thug robs a young engaged couple of their last few dollars. When the thug's gang boss hears of the robbery, he gives them back their money and takes them under his wing. The thug, ... See full summary »

Director: Lowell Sherman | Stars: Lowell Sherman, Marian Nixon, Hugh Trevor, George F. Marion

Votes: 203

21. Playing Around (1930)

66 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

New York girl has a dull boyfriend and seems destined for a dull marriage when she meets a rich playboy who has money to burn and places to go. She gets involved with the playboy and never ... See full summary »

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Alice White, Chester Morris, William Bakewell, Richard Carlyle

Votes: 173

22. Roadhouse Nights (1930)

68 min | Drama

A boozing newsman (Charles Ruggles) woos a singer (Helen Morgan) while spying on her bootlegger boyfriend (Fred Kohler).

Director: Hobart Henley | Stars: Helen Morgan, Charles Ruggles, Fred Kohler, Jimmy Durante

Votes: 66

23. See America Thirst (1930)

75 min | Comedy

Two men, one timid and one aggressive, make out as comical criminals.

Director: William James Craft | Stars: Harry Langdon, Slim Summerville, Bessie Love, Mitchell Lewis

Votes: 7

24. The Squealer (1930)

67 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A gangster's wife, fearful that he is about to be murdered by his rivals, tips off the police to his whereabouts in order to save his life. Her husband, however, believes her reason was ... See full summary »

Director: Harry Joe Brown | Stars: Jack Holt, Dorothy Revier, Davey Lee, Matt Moore

25. Street of Chance (1930)

Passed | 75 min | Drama

A big-time, but honest gambler has to prevent his younger brother from following in his footsteps, and taking up gambling.

Director: John Cromwell | Stars: William Powell, Jean Arthur, Kay Francis, Regis Toomey

Votes: 169

26. The Widow from Chicago (1930)

Not Rated | 64 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Vice lord Dominic has brought Swifty Dorgan east to do a job for him. When Swifty appears to have died falling from a train, detective Henderson impersonates him hoping to get into the mob.... See full summary »

Director: Edward F. Cline | Stars: Alice White, Edward G. Robinson, Neil Hamilton, Frank McHugh

Votes: 302

27. Bad Company (1931)

76 min | Drama

Ricardo Cortez plays a ruthless, near-psychotic gangster who withal follows his own code of honor. Helen Twelvetrees co-stars as a trusting young woman who marries mob lawyer John Garrick, ... See full summary »

Director: Tay Garnett | Stars: Helen Twelvetrees, Ricardo Cortez, John Garrick, Paul Hurst

Votes: 85

28. Corsair (1931)

75 min | Adventure

A stock market broker plans to liven up his boring life by taking up piracy on the high seas.

Director: Roland West | Stars: Chester Morris, Thelma Todd, Fred Kohler, Ned Sparks

Votes: 159

29. Dance, Fools, Dance (1931)

Approved | 80 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

After the death of her father and loss of the family fortune, Bonnie gets a job as a cub reporter while her brother becomes involved in bootlegging.

Director: Harry Beaumont | Stars: Joan Crawford, Cliff Edwards, Lester Vail, William Bakewell

Votes: 711

31. A Free Soul (1931)

Passed | 93 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

An alcoholic lawyer who successfully defended a notorious gambler on a murder charge objects when his free-spirited daughter becomes romantically involved with him.

Director: Clarence Brown | Stars: Norma Shearer, Leslie Howard, Lionel Barrymore, Clark Gable

Votes: 2,064

32. The Gang Buster (1931)

65 min | Comedy, Crime

Naïve insurance agent 'Cyclone' Case falls in love with Sylvia Martine, whose father has a dispute with gangster Mike Slade. When Sylvia is kidnapped by Slade and his gang, 'Cyclone' ... See full summary »

Director: A. Edward Sutherland | Stars: Jack Oakie, Jean Arthur, William 'Stage' Boyd, Wynne Gibson

Votes: 39

33. Gentleman's Fate (1931)

Passed | 90 min | Crime, Drama

Jack lives the high life and wants to make Marjorie his one and only. He then learns that his deceased father is alive but dying of lead poisoning. His father sent him away, twenty years ... See full summary »

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: John Gilbert, Louis Wolheim, Leila Hyams, Anita Page

Votes: 695

34. The Good Bad Girl (1931)

Passed | 67 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Marcia Cameron (Mae Clark), a gangster's moll, quits her racketeering boyfriend Dapper Dan Tyler (Robert Ellis) for a respectable rich man, Bob Henderson (Jmaes Hall), but after giving ... See full summary »

Director: Roy William Neill | Stars: Mae Clarke, James Hall, Marie Prevost, Robert Ellis

Votes: 72

35. The Guilty Generation (1931)

Approved | 82 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

A Romeo and Juliet love story between the son of a brutal Italian bootlegger and the daughter of his bitter ex-partner, who is engaged in a blood feud with his one-time friend.

Director: Rowland V. Lee | Stars: Leo Carrillo, Constance Cummings, Robert Young, Leslie Fenton

Votes: 224

36. Hell Bound (1931)

Not Rated | 81 min | Crime, Drama

Lane and Diane are a young married couple living in a coastal town whose lives are about to be torn apart by an old book of magic.

Director: Walter Lang | Stars: Leo Carrillo, Lloyd Hughes, Ralph Ince, Lola Lane

Votes: 8

37. Homicide Squad (1931)

70 min | Crime, Drama

The police use a gangster's son to get to him.

Directors: Edward L. Cahn, George Melford | Stars: Leo Carrillo, Noah Beery, Mary Brian, Russell Gleason

Votes: 13

38. Hush Money (1931)

68 min | Comedy, Drama

Hush Money is a 1931 American Pre-Code comedy-drama film featuring Joan Bennett, Hardie Albright, Owen Moore, Myrna Loy, and George Raft. The movie was directed by Sidney Lanfield.

Director: Sidney Lanfield | Stars: Joan Bennett, Hardie Albright, Owen Moore, Myrna Loy

Votes: 14

39. The Last Parade (1931)

Passed | 82 min | Action, Crime, Drama

The first film produced by Harry Cohn's brother Jack, and a version of this film's plot was used in 1937's "End of the Trail" that also starred Jack Holt as the good-man-gone-wrong who is ... See full summary »

Director: Erle C. Kenton | Stars: Jack Holt, Tom Moore, Constance Cummings, Robert Ellis

Votes: 8

41. M (1931)

Not Rated | 99 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Peter Lorre, Ellen Widmann, Inge Landgut, Otto Wernicke

Votes: 130,596 | Gross: $0.03M

42. Quick Millions (1931)

72 min | Crime, Drama

Truck driver Bugs Raymond organizes the trucking associations and takes protection money. Now rich, he decides to marry socialite Dorothy Stone. She rejects him for another, so he makes plans to kidnap her on her wedding day.

Director: Rowland Brown | Stars: Spencer Tracy, Marguerite Churchill, Sally Eilers, Bob Burns

Votes: 144

43. The Ruling Voice (1931)

Passed | 76 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

For the love and respect of his daughter, a crime boss reconsiders his involvement in the extortion racket he's built.

Director: Rowland V. Lee | Stars: Walter Huston, Loretta Young, Dudley Digges, David Manners

Votes: 147

44. The Secret 6 (1931)

Passed | 83 min | Crime, Drama

After rising bootlegger Slaughterhouse Scorpio eliminates his gangland competition, two reporters and a cabal of six businessmen work to expose him.

Director: George W. Hill | Stars: Wallace Beery, Lewis Stone, Johnny Mack Brown, Jean Harlow

Votes: 650

45. Smart Money (1931)

Passed | 81 min | Crime, Drama

Immigrant Greek barber has uncommon skills in playing poker and soon rises in the seedy world of illegal gambling, but pretty blondes remain his Achilles' heel.

Director: Alfred E. Green | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, James Cagney, Evalyn Knapp, Ralf Harolde

Votes: 1,537

46. The Star Witness (1931)

TV-G | 68 min | Drama

Members of a family witness two murders, but the gang uses threats, violence and kidnapping to try to keep the members from testifying.

Director: William A. Wellman | Stars: Walter Huston, Frances Starr, Grant Mitchell, Sally Blane

Votes: 499

47. The Tip-Off (1931)

71 min | Comedy, Crime

Eddie Quillan falls in love with a gangster's girlfriend but avoids trouble when he becomes friends with Robert Armstrong and his girlfriend

Director: Albert S. Rogell | Stars: Eddie Quillan, Robert Armstrong, Ginger Rogers, Joan Peers

Votes: 184

48. Afraid to Talk (1932)

Passed | 69 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery