Torrid Zone

Torrid Zone

Director: William Keighley

Cast: James Cagney, Ann Sheridan, Pat O'Brien

     
 

Torrid Zone star James Cagney once described the film as "The Front Page among the bananas." Indeed, the screenplay diligently follows the Front Page plot device of a tough boss (Pat O'Brien) pulling every underhanded trick in the book to keep his top man (Cagney) from quitting. This time the setting is a Central American plantation owned bySee more details below

Overview

Torrid Zone star James Cagney once described the film as "The Front Page among the bananas." Indeed, the screenplay diligently follows the Front Page plot device of a tough boss (Pat O'Brien) pulling every underhanded trick in the book to keep his top man (Cagney) from quitting. This time the setting is a Central American plantation owned by O'Brien, which supervisor Cagney would dearly love to leave behind. Complicating the plot is a nightclub singer (Anne Sheridan) over whom O'Brien and Tracy do battle; a bored married woman (Helen Vinson) with eyes for Cagney; and a gang of Latino bandits, led by George Tobias (providing comic relief). What Torrid Zone lacked in originality it made up for in sheer energy.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Anyone visiting the Torrid Zone better be prepared to duck -- not to avoid a stray bullet (though there are a few of those), but to protect himself from the onslaught of wisecracks that are tossed around with such abandon. As might be expected from a film that many consider to be a variation on The Front Page, the lines in Torrid come thick and fast -- and that's just the way it should be. What is unexpected for the period is how double the entendre is in many cases; one wonders how the strict censors of the periods let some of these slide by, but thank goodness they did. The salty, slangy, streetwise dialogue is a huge asset for Torrid; what other film could get a howl from the simple line "History repeats itself"? The effect comes all from the setup (and from Ann Sheridan's impeccable delivery), and the creators of Torrid know exactly how to make setups work. The screenplay and William Keighley's rapid-fire direction are vitally important, but so is the cast. James Cagney and Pat O'Brien are once again a team that works together like a well-oiled machine, with Cagney played his familiar pugnacious ladies' man routine and O'Brien delivering a tougher characterization than usual. The aforementioned Sheridan is sensational, demonstrating that her label as the "Oomph Girl" applies as much to her delivery of a tart wisecrack as to her stunning looks. Andy Devine is his usual bizarrely voiced self, and there's even a young George Reeves on hand. Some of Torrid doesn't hold up as well today, especially its depiction of Latin Americans, but most viewers will give in to its verve and forgive it its flaws.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/24/2007
UPC:
0012569796683
Original Release:
1940
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Time:
1:28:00

Special Features

Warner night at the movies 1940 short subjects gallery:; Vintage newreel; Musical short Ozzie Nelson and His Orchestra; Historical short Pony Express Days; Classic Oscar®-Nominated* cartoon A Wild Hare; Trailers of Torrid Zone and 1940's Santa Fe Trail

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Cagney Nick Butler
Ann Sheridan Lee Donley
Pat O'Brien Steve Case
Andy Devine Wally Davis
Helen Vinson Gloria Anderson
Jerome Cowan Bob Anderson
George Tobias Rosario La Mata
George Reeves Sancho
Victor Kilian Carlos
Frank Puglia Rodriguez
John Ridgely Gardner
Grady Sutton Sam the Secretary
Paul Porcasi Garcia the Hotel Bar Proprietor
Frank Yaconelli Lopez
Dick Boteler Hemandez
Frank Mayo Shaffer
Jack Mower McNamara
Paul Hurst Daniels
George Regas Sergeant of Police
Elvira Sanchez Rita
Trevor Bardette First Policeman
Joe Dominguez Manuel
Ernesto Piedra Second Policeman
Rafael Storm Man
Wade Boteler Actor
Rafael Corio Man (uncredited)
George Humbert Hotel Manager
Manuel Lopez Chico
Don Orlando Employee
Tony Paton Charley

Technical Credits
William Keighley Director
William Cagney Producer
Adolph Deutsch Score Composer
Leo F. Forbstein Musical Direction/Supervision
Oliver S. Garretson Sound/Sound Designer
Byron Haskin Special Effects
Mark Hellinger Associate Producer
James Wong Howe Cinematographer
M. K. Jerome Songwriter
Jack Killifer Editor
H.F. Koenekamp Special Effects
Richard Macaulay Screenwriter
Jack Scholl Songwriter
Howard Shoup Costumes/Costume Designer
Ted Smith Art Director
Edward Thorne Set Decoration/Design
Jerry Wald Screenwriter
Hal B. Wallis Executive Producer
Jack L. Warner Producer
Perc Westmore Makeup

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Torrid Zone
1. Santa Fe Trail Theatrical Trailer [2:13]
1. Newsreel [:59]
1. Ozzie Nelson & His Orchestra [9:42]
1. Pony Express Days [19:37]
1. A Wild Hare [8:07]
1. Torrid Zone [:00]
1. Credits [1:52]
2. Mi Caballero [1:48]
3. Shoving her Around [3:15]
4. Calling the Shots [3:20]
5. Touchdown for Rosario [4:00]
6. Bad Banana Batches [4:58]
7. Going All the Way? [3:03]
8. Back In the Job [5:49]
9. No Place for a Woman [4:17]
10. From Soup to Nuts [6:38]
11. All Aboard [3:53]
12. Rosario or Fruit? [4:24]
13. Rosario's Raid [2:55]
14. History Repeats Itself [4:35]
15. Sabotage [4:33]
16. Ripe for Plucking [3:49]
17. Higher Ground [3:29]
18. First Aid [3:52]
19. No Jilt Without a Tumble [2:39]
20. Checking Out [3:58]
21. Another Cigarette [3:57]
22. Tables Are Inside Out [4:21]
23. Catching a Bullet [1:47]
24. Cast List [:37]
1. Santa Fe Trail Theatrical Trailer [2:13]
1. Newsreel [:59]
1. Ozzie Nelson & His Orchestra [9:42]
1. Pony Express Days [19:37]
1. A Wild Hare [8:07]
1. Torrid Zone [:00]

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