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Hells House (1932)

6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

An orphan takes the blame for a bootlegging operation run by Pat O'Brien's character. The orphan is at a reform school where the orphans are treated dreadfully. Bette Davis' role is not prominent in this movie.


Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Bette Davis, Pat O'Brien, Junior Durkin, Frank Coghlan Jr., Emma Dunn
  • Directors: Howard Higgin
  • Writers: Howard Higgin, B. Harrison Orkow, Paul Gangelin
  • Producers: B.F. Zeidman
  • Format: NTSC
  • Region: All Regions
  • Studio: Synergy Ent
  • DVD Release Date: September 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 72 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000W90MB6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #394,297 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hells House (1932)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Annie Van Auken TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 20, 2010
Format: DVD
DVD mfr. SYNERGY offer no commentary, deleted scenes, subtitles or other bonus features. Dubs are "best available source" and can vary from very good to only fair.

In the Poverty Row melodrama HELL'S HOUSE, a naivé kid is sent to reform school for not infoming on a cowardly bootlegger that he admires. Conditions at the mismanaged juvenile facility are deplorable and corporal punishment for the least infraction too common. Jimmy's best friend in "stir," a sickly boy nicknamed "Shorty" (Coghlan Jr.), nearly dies from confinement in a walk-in cold storage room, so Jimmy escapes to get help for the boy. He turns to charismatic but phony Kelly, his imagined friend, but only when newspaperman Frank Gebhardt (Wallace) calls Kelly a "rat" does he finally do what's right.

CAST NOTES--
Miss Davis is listed as star but hers is a supporting role. The lead is actually young Durkin. Bette's acting is amateurish (especially in comparison to her later triumphs) in the role of Peggy Gardner, but O'Brien plays a great schnook as bootlegger Matt Kelly.

Junior Durkin was Huck Finn in two circa 1930 PARAMOUNT films. Three years after "Hell's House" was completed, he died in a car accident that also killed Jackie Coogan's dad and injured Jackie. At the time, Junior was living with agent Henry Wilson, an "admirer" of male pulchritude. Wilson later discovered, mentored (perhaps bedded) and renamed Rock Hudson, Troy Donahue and Tab Hunter.

Unlike his ill-fated 'Shorty' of this story, Frank Coughlin Jr. lived long, dying at age 83. In 1941, he starred in the cliffhanger serial THE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN MARVEL.

Parenthetical number preceding title is a 1 to 10 IMDb viewer poll rating.

(6.3) Hell's House (1932) - Bette Davis/Pat O'Brien/Junior Durkin/Frank Coghlan Jr./Emma Dunn/Charley Grapewin/Morgan Wallace/Hooper Atchley
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tisa A. Williams on January 8, 2015
Format: Amazon Instant Video
Bette Davis has a supporting role, but the rest of the cast and the storyline makes up for less Bette. This is a wonderful movie for those looking for that silver screen experience.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sedella on June 12, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
I have always loved Bette Davis and the Old movies. But I love the ones that she did when she first started out. That way I could watch her as she evolved.
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