The Great O’Malley

What better movie to post about on St. Patrick’s Day than Warner Brother’s 1937 movie starring Pat O’Brien part of the legendary Warner Brothers Irish Mafia. Pat O’Brian plays James Aloysius O’Malley an overzealous patrolman, a stickler for the law, that even threatens to arrest his own muther played by Mary Gordon for throwing bread crumbs out of their tenement window meant for the birds on the fire escape. Ordinances are ordinances weren’t they meant to be enforced?
Warner Brothers child star Cape Town, South African born Sybil Jason plays Barbara Phillips crippled daughter of unemployed father John Phillips played by Humphrey Bogart in a third billing roll. Phillips stopped by O’Malley for a lecture and a ticket over a broken muffler loses a much needed job and is subsequently jailed after committing a desperate pawn shop robbery.
O’Malley demoted from patrolman to crossing guard at the school little Barbara Phillips attends, is taught the meaning of ‘justice tempered with mercy’ from little Barbara after learning she is the daughter of the jailed Bogart.
Ann Sheridan as Barbara Phillips school teacher ads a little ‘oomph’ to the movie, Sybil Jason provides the tears as the ‘gimpy’ kid not picked to play with the other kids at recess because of the heavy brace she is required to wear.
If you are a Warner Bros. Classic Hollywood movie fan this film isn’t an award winner but it is a Directed by William Dieterle film and features favorite character actors: Frieda Inescort, Donald Crisp, Henry O’Neill, Frank Sheridan plus recognizable kid actors Leonard Kibrick, Delmar and Bobs Watson. The platitudes expressed in this movie could be could be direct dialog from a modern day Blue Bloods episode: ‘Cops aren’t bruisers anymore they are peace officers’, ‘You’re not a policeman just to make pinches’.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all of the Blue Bloods out there!

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