7.2/10
864
20 user 12 critic

The Dark Horse (1932)

Jailbird is hired to lead a dimwitted candidate's campaign for governor.

Director:

Alfred E. Green
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Warren William ... Hal Samson Blake
Bette Davis ... Kay Russell
Guy Kibbee ... Zachary Hicks
Vivienne Osborne ... Maybelle Blake, Hal's ex-wife
Frank McHugh ... Joe
Sam Hardy ... Mr. Black
Harry Holman ... Mr. Jones
Charles Sellon ... Mr. Green
Robert Emmett O'Connor ... Sheriff (as Robert E. O'Connor)
Berton Churchill ... William A. Underwood
Robert Warwick ... Mr. Clark
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Storyline

Zachary Hicks is nominated at the Progressive party's convention even though he has little chance of winning the governorship. Kay suggests the party bosses hire Hal Blake (whom she loves) as campaign manager. Hal is in jail for falling behind in his alimony payments to Maybelle, but Kay convinces the politicians to seem him in prison, Impressed with the speech they hear him deliver to a cellmate, the committee pays Hal's fine and back alimony payments. Hal takes on the campaign and several marital arrangements. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 June 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Czarny rumak See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Here are the lyrics that Hal Blake wrote for the Hicks campaign song while in jail. They are sung to the tune of "East Side, West Side." - "Up state, down state, cities and the sticks, The voters yell for a change, And babies cry for Hicks! Boys and girls together, Toms and Harrys and Dicks, Climb the big band wagon, While they cast their vote for Hicks!" See more »

Quotes

Hal Samson Blake: We're going to make him even dumber than he is.
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Connections

Featured in Hollywood and the Stars: The Angry Screen (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

A Hot Time in the Old Town
(uncredited)
Music by Theodore A. Metz
Played at the convention
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An amusing take-off of the American political process, 1930's style, but it falters halfway through.
6 January 1999 | by Art-22See all my reviews

I had lots of chuckles for the first half of this spoof of the American political scene in the 1930's, when a deadlocked Progressive Party convention finally nominates delegate Zachary Hicks (Guy Kibbee) for governor because one of the party leaders liked his name, and then spread the word he'd be a good compromise candidate. What they didn't bargain for was that Kibbee was as dumb as could be. Party secretary, Bette Davis (young and beautiful in this early role), suggests getting the dynamo campaign manager, Warren William, to handle the campaign. The funniest scene occurs at the debate, when Kibbee's opponent (Berton Churchill) starts to give the same speech (written by Abraham Lincoln) that William had Kibbee memorize. William jumps up and accuses Churchill of plagiarism.

Kibbee is perfect as the dumb candidate, with his wide cherubic grin and innocent, halting way of speaking. William is also excellent as the fast talking, fast thinking manager, a part he played many times in previous and later films. Unfortunately, when William's ex-wife, Vivienne Osborne, shows up demanding past alimony payments and causing Davis to become jealous, the focus of the film changes a bit, much to its detriment. Still, the opposition Conservative Party has some tricks up their sleeve trying to win the election, which keeps the film interesting.


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