I Am a Criminal

A top gangster on his way to prison sacrifices everything for the little boy he has adopted in this rare 1930s Poverty Row crime melodrama.
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Format:  DVD-R
item number:  872QY

DVD-R Details

  • Run Time: 1 hours, 12 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Released: September 5, 2023
  • Originally Released: 1938
  • Label: Alpha Video

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring , , &
Directed by

Entertainment Reviews:

Description by OLDIES.com:

Mob boss Brad McArthur is feeling the heat from the city's new district attorney. The D.A. is unable to pin anything on him until a drunken man accidentally dies at one of Brad's casinos. Charged with a manslaughter rap, Brad tries to fight it by hiring a publicist. He suggests the mobster adopt a child to look like an upstanding citizen, but Brad is rejected by every orphanage because of his bad reputation. Instead he takes in Bobby, a homeless newsboy from the streets. Despite the gangster's hardened exterior, before long the two are like a real father and son. As the manslaughter trial approaches, Brad's well-paid lawyer and publicist abandon him. Finally grasping that he really is going to jail, Brad takes Bobby and escapes into the country. The police offer a substantial reward for his capture, and as all of Brad's old enemies start closing in, the formerly cold-hearted criminal realizes that he will have to sacrifice everything for the little boy he has come to love…

A crime drama with a tear-jerking twist, I Am a Criminal stars John Carroll, the actor best known for playing the masked swashbuckler in Republic's 12-chapter serial Zorro Rides Again (1937). Adorable young Martin Spellman, who plays Bobby, had previously appeared in Boys Town (1938) with Spencer Tracy. Publicity boasted this was Carroll's first "straight dramatic" role and Spellman's second. Neither went on to particularly celebrated careers, with Carroll fading away into smaller roles and Spellman retiring from acting for a career in auto insurance after they both served in World War II. Female lead Kay Linaker later wrote the cult classic The Blob (1958) under the pen name "Kate Phillips." Mary Kornman, best known for playing opposite Mickey Daniels in Hal Roach's silent "Our Gang" shorts, appears at the end of the film as a kindly country girl who befriends the on-the-run Carroll and Spellman. Monogram Pictures later remade this movie as Smart Guy (1943) with Rick Vallin and Bobby Larson.

This product is made-on-demand by the manufacturer using DVD-R recordable media. Almost all DVD players can play DVD-Rs (except for some older models made before 2000) - please consult your owner's manual for formats compatible with your player. These DVD-Rs may not play on all computers or DVD player/recorders. To address this, the manufacturer recommends viewing this product on a DVD player that does not have recording capability.
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Product Info

  • Sales Rank: 903
  • UPC: 089218855497
  • Shipping Weight: 0.17/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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