Little Caesar


D: Mervyn LeRoy

Warner Bros/First National (Hal B. Wallis & Darryl F. Zanuck)

US 1931

79 mins


W: Robert Lord & Francis Edward Faragoh [based on the novel by W.R. Burnett]

DP: Tony Gaudio

Ed: Ray Curtiss

Mus: Erno Rapee (& David Mendoza)

Edward G. Robinson (Enrico 'Little Caesar' Bandello), Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. (Joe Massara), Glenda Farrell (Olga Stassoff), William Collier, Jr. (Tony Passa), Sidney Blackmer (Big Boy)

The original gangster movie, providing a breakthrough role for Edward G. Robinson as the title character.

Enrico Bandello is a small time crook who moves to the big city where his criminal empire grows, but at a cost.

The film pre-dates the original version of Scarface by two years and is incredibly well done considering its age. Obviously, certain aspects have dated over time, but this is probably as good a film as possible for 1931, boasting a great cast, solid direction and a fine screenplay.  It's clear to see how this became an inspiration for later films in the genre.


Little Caesar
Little Caesar