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Angels With Dirty Faces Details


Childhood chums Rocky Sullivan (James Cagney) and Jerry Connelly (Pat O'Brien) grow up on opposite sides of the fence: Rocky matures into a prominent gangster, while Jerry becomes a priest, tending to the needs of his old tenement neighborhood. Rocky becomes a hero to a gang of teenaged boys (played by Dead End Kids Billy Halop, Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Gabriel Dell, Bobby Jordan and Bernard Punsley). Father Jerry despairs at this, asking Rocky to lay off so he can keep the kids on the straight and narrow. Then Rocky's crooked business associates George Bancroft and Humphrey Bogart attempt to end Father Jerry's radio campaign against the rackets by killing the priest. Rocky (whose cynical outlook on life has been softened by his romance with true-blue Anne Sheridan) shoots them down and takes it on the lam. Arrested and convicted of murder, Rocky sits smugly on death row, fully intending to go to the chair with a smile on his face. A few moments before the execution, Father Jerry pleads with Rocky to "turn yellow" so that the tenement kids will despise his memory. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

  • Release date:November 24, 1938


Awarded by
National Board of Review James Cagney Best Acting 1938 Winner
New York Film Critics Circle James Cagney Best Actor 1938 Winner
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences James Cagney Best Actor 1938 Nominee
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Michael Curtiz Best Director 1938 Nominee


James Cagney
as Rocky Sullivan
Pat O'Brien
as Rev. Jerry Connolly
Humphrey Bogart
as James Frazier
Ann Sheridan
as Laury Ferguson
George Bancroft
as Mac Keefer
Billy Halop
as Soapy
Bobby Jordan
as Swing
Leo Gorcey
as Bim
Gabriel Dell
as Pasty
Huntz Hall
as Crab
Bernard Punsly
as Hunky
Edward Pawley
as Guard Edwards
Adrian Morris
as Blackie
Frankie Burke
as Rocky (as a boy)
Marilyn Knowlden
as Laury as a Girl
Wilbur Mack
as Croupier
Vince Lombardi
Wilfred Lucas
as Police officer
Dick Wessel
Frank S. Hagney
John Hamilton
as Police Captain
Poppy Wilde
as Girl at gaming table
Chuck Stubbs
as Red
Emory Parnell
William Edmunds
as Italian Storekeeper
Pat O'Malley
as Railroad guard
Dick Rich
as Gangster
Charles Trowbridge
as Norton J. White, Press Editor
William Pawley
as Bugs the Gunman
Joseph Downing
as Steve
Oscar O'Shea
as Guard Kennedy
Mary Gordon
as Mrs. Patrick McGee
David Durand
as Boy in Poolroom
Vera Lewis
as Soapy's Mother
Lotta Williams
as Woman
Steven Darrell
as Gangster
Alexander Lockwood
Al Hill
Charles Sullivan
as Gunman
Ben Hendricks, Jr.
as Guard
Elliott Sullivan
as Police Officer
Harry Hayden
as Pharmacist
William Tracy
as Jerry as a Boy
Roger McGee
Lee Phelps
William Crowell
as Whimpering Convict
Jack Mower
as Detective
Frank Coghlan, Jr.
as Boy in Poolroom
Lane Chandler
as Guard
Sidney Bracey
Charles Wilson
as Buckley, the Police Chief
Jeffrey Sayre
John Harron
as Sharpies
James Farley
as Railroad Yard Watchman
Dan Jesse
Harris Berger
as Basketball Captain
William Worthington
as Warden
Theodore Rand
as Gunman
Ralph Sanford
as City Editor, Press
George Sorel
as Headwaiter
Belle Mitchell
as Mrs. Maggione
Jack Perrin
as Death Row Guard
John Dilson
as Chronicle Editor
Joe Devlin
as Gangster
Dan Wolheim
Robert E. Homans
as Policeman
Donald Kerr
Earl Dwire
as Priest


Michael Curtiz
Sam Bischoff
John Wexley
Warren B. Duff
Sol Polito
Max Steiner
Composer (Music Score)
Leo F. Forbstein
Musical Direction/Supervision
Owen Marks
Costume Designer
Sherry Shourds
First Assistant Director
Perc Westmore