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The Roaring Twenties (2005)

James Cagney , Priscilla Lane , Raoul Walsh  |  NR |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: James Cagney, Priscilla Lane, Humphrey Bogart, Gladys George, Jeffrey Lynn
  • Directors: Raoul Walsh
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: January 25, 2005
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0006HBV32
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,076 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Roaring Twenties" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Leonard Maltin hosts Warner Night at the Movies 1939, with newsreel, musical short "All Girl Revue," comedy short "The Great Library Misery," cartoon "Thugs with Dirty Mugs," and theatrical trailers
  • New featurette: "The Roaring Twenties: The World Moves On"

Editorial Reviews

James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart, Jeffrey Lynn. Classic gangster film in which three Army buddies, who took different paths after the end of WWI, find themselves clashing years later in Prohibition-era America over bootleg liquor, the law, a cab company and, of course, beautiful women. 1939/b&w/107 min/NR/fullscreen.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm Just Wild About Harry April 10, 2005
In 1939 the world was moving on. Warner Brothers, the Hollywood studio that owed its existence to Prohibition and the Volstead Act, was slowly weaning itself from gangster movies. The genre's greatest star, James Cagney, was heartily sick of playing gangsters - How many ways can you hit a guy, anyway?

THE ROARING TWENTIES, from the story "The World Moves On" by popular Broadway columnist Mark Hellinger, was `a memory' of the era Warners mined so successfully, and profitably, in the thirties. It stars Cagney as Eddie Bartlett, a more-or-less good guy who fought in World War I only to return to a country that didn't quite know what to do with all of her returning soldiers. Bartlett's two army buddies figure prominently in his eventual rise and fall - the slimy George Hally (Humphrey Bogart) and golden boy Lloyd Hart (Jeffrey Lynn). Bartlett's first touch of the Big Bottom occurs early on after his return. The job he'd thought was waiting for him when he got home is filled by someone else, and soon enough he sees and grabs at the opportunities presented by Prohibition. Bartlett's ascent begins when he begins to manufacture his own bathtub gin. Along the way Barlett enlists the services of old foxhole buddies Hally (right-hand gunsel) and Hart (legal advisor). Bartlett goes into the speakeasy business with Panama Smith (Gladys George) and falls hard for pretty young Jean Sherman (Priscilla Lane). Of course it's lonely at the top, and with treacherous associates like Hally and rivals like Nick Brown (Paul Kelly), precarious as well.

Cagney may have been sick of playing gangsters by 1939, but it's hard to tell that from his performance.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Roaring Twenties June 21, 2007
A breakthrough for director Walsh, this classic boasts electric performances from both Cagney and Bogie. Consistent with most Bogart portrayals from the thirties, his George Hally is a low double-crosser who puts the screws to honorable (in his way) Eddie. Consistent with most Cagney roles, Eddie gets his revenge. "Twenties" is a worthy swan song to the glory days of the gangster picture--and just wait for that immortal closing line of dialogue.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
This movie - the pluperfect example of the Warner gangster film - seems a better film today than at the time it was released. Directed with flair by Raoul Walsh, it moves at a cracking pace and is especially well cast with a gallery of Warner Bros regulars. Cagney dominates the picture with one of his most likeable and poignant performances, always full of humour and above all humanity. The attention to period detail is outstanding and especially, with regard to its music score - a brilliant collage of contemporaty popular songs woven into a marvellous dramatic score by that unsung genius, Ray Heindorf who also provides the knockout orchestrations.

The finale is pure magic, as Cagney dies in the arms of Gladys George, on the steps of a large church (one of the most ubiquitous standing sets on the Warner Lot - Bette Davis runs up those steps at the start of Deception (1946) and it stood in as a Court House in a dozen films). Bogart makes a great ratfaced crook and his verbal sparring with Cagney is a delight.

The DVD is all one could ever wish for - a sparkling restoration with terrific sound and a host of extras to delight the most discerning of buffs. My only quibble - for some weird reason, my copy lost synchronisation bewween sound & picture for about 15 minutes (Reel 2?). However, I have seen other copies and it was fine.

Bravo Warners! This great film is now immortally preserved and its stature can only grow with each passing decade.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cagney and Bogie as bootleggers June 8, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
One of my all-time favorite gangster movies. The Roaring 20's features James Cagney at his best as a returning WWI vet who has lost his job , turns to bootlegging and muscles his way to the top. Cagney is at his wisecracking tough guy peak in this and he is given a run for his money by Humphrey Bogart as his WWI buddy turned partner turned rival.
The movie traces these characters through the tumultuous speakeasy days. Cagney's character falls for a young singer who is in love with a young straightshooting attorney. Eddie(Cagney) has one loyal admirer in Panama Smith an aging speakeasy manager who is played flawlessly by Gladys George. She delivers the most memorable line in the movie "Get a Victrola- Jughead".
The story culminates with Eddie being ruined financially and having a showdown with Bogart's character that results in the death scene to end all death scenes. Cagney's staggeriing down the street and collapsing on the church steps after being shot has been often imitated but never duplicated.
A great movie and a piece of film history that stands up to repeated viewings.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cagney and Bogie pack a wallop July 25, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
They just don't make 'em like this anymore and the primary reason is because there simply aren't stars around like Jimmy Cagney and Humphrey Bogart. Not only were these two huge superstars, they were both phenomenal actors with rare screen presence. This is their best (and last) movie together and it works because of their dual performances, especially Cagney in the lead role. Try and take your eyes off him throughout the fil, it's practically impossible.
The script contains many instances of unintentional humor and the lingo used throughout is typical for the gangster formula of the 30's. Words like dame, broad, chintzy, dough and palooka are sprinkled liberally throughout and Cagney delivers them with his typical bravado which is so charming and so unique to him. He is a true treasure and his gangster persona reaches its apex here as the good guy gone wrong. Bogey, on the other hand, is pretty sadistic throughout and there's nothing to love about him. But hey, it's Bogie, so you love him in spite of yourself. Priscilla lane is excellent as the girl Cagney loves but who doesn't love him back. One wonders whether her character had a set of eyes: what woman in their right mind would turn down Jimmy Cagney?
Though predictable and dated in spots, the movie holds up very well and is still enjoyable to watch. Don't expect any great surprises or any deviation from the Warner Bros. gangster formula, but Cagney has rarely been better and turns in a riveting, memorable performance.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Wonderful 30's gangster movie with Cagney and Bogart
Published 18 days ago by Mstr_Acct_03
5.0 out of 5 stars Thanks!
awesome! fast delivery quality movie for a quality price!
Published 1 month ago by joseph layden
5.0 out of 5 stars Something Preordained
Ah, the gangster picture! Let's take a look at popular American cinema of the 1930s. Universal had their monster movies, they had their Dracula's and Frankenstein's and Mummy's. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mad Zack
5.0 out of 5 stars "He used to be a big shot."
Great movie; sort of sums up all the old gangster movies. Both Cagney and Gladys George are at their peak.
Published 5 months ago by ALB
5.0 out of 5 stars good plot good story
liked this movie can remember most of it good story line very good actors liked it a lot as my wife liked ok too
Published 5 months ago by C. Folger
5.0 out of 5 stars 1920s
James Cagney, is a great actor, he can put his heart and soul into playing a tough guy, I would tell you, the public to buy this dvd. I am a big james Cagney fan.
Published 6 months ago by cool
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic!!!!
A must have for any gangster genre or James Cagney fan! DVD has great supplementary material and Looney Tunes cartoon.
Published 7 months ago by JT
5.0 out of 5 stars a semi-classic
Cagney and Bogart are two of the finest actors and they are perfect for the roles they play in this movie. Read more
Published 7 months ago by ilbob
5.0 out of 5 stars Roaring Twenties revealed
I absolutely loved this movie!! To see Cagney and Bogart in the same movie, to see the history sequences of the time, and the story line from the war to the bootlegging to the... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Diane Tardibuono
5.0 out of 5 stars The Roaring Twenties anything but trite or cliche
The movie title might lead you to believe that this is a light-weight film, but it is anything but that. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Mark Roberts
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