The Public Enemy

The Public Enemy is an American film directed by William A. Wellman from the year 1931. He is one of the classics of the gangster film and starring James Cagney reached by the highly successful film and his breakthrough was many years of Hollywood’s highest stars. Became famous, especially the grapefruit scene.

The film is about two friends Tom Powers and Matt Doyle (James Cagney and Edward Woods), as children who commit thefts and scams for the crook Putty Nose (Murray Kinnell). Tom’s older brother Michael (Donald Cook), however, is honest from the beginning, what the film repeatedly addresses. Michael hates and despises Tom, because he earned his money with crimes – Tom Michael smiled, because in this war against the Germans was also killed and his Order has “no’s for hand-holding” get. The poor mother (Beryl Mercer) refuses to take a clear position. Several years later, Tom and Matt Putty is the chance to take on larger tasks entrusted to them by a more difficult job. Than this but something goes wrong, they can be putty in the lurch. Then the two friends go to the crime boss Paddy Ryan (Robert O’Connor), which immediately gives them even work. In the Prohibition era , the three pull together with the gangster “Nails” Nathan (Leslie Fenton) on a lucrative deal with the distribution of beer. Tom and Matt threaten bar owners and force them to buy out their overpriced beer. But Tom and Matt take on murder contracts: So this example are recognized on Putty, with whom she spent her childhood. As these notes that they want to kill him, he begs for his life. Tom this is not interested and he shoots him in cold blood. “Nails” Nathan, who held the whole gang, dies in a riding accident. Then a gang war breaks out. Paddy tries to prepare the transition to this war and the gang trust him fully. He betrays his gang, however, to the competition. Matt shot down in the street by members of the rival mobs of “Schemer” Burns. Tom tries to get revenge by starting a firefight at the headquarters of the other gang. Here, however, he was severely wounded and ends up in hospital. He gets along with his brother, apologized to him and decides to return home. Tom, however, is abducted from the hospital. One night, while the mother of both a room for Tom trims is the body of the gangster – wrapped in blankets – leaning against the door. When Mike opens the door he finds his dead brother’s death against a distorted facial expression.

The Public Enemy was the first box office success of James Cagney , who made ​​him a star. He also gave him the same image of the tough guy that he was also obtained in the course of his career. A large proportion of this image was the scene of this film, in which Cagney his young girlfriend (played by Mae Clarke ) half a grapefruit pushed in the face. The film was such a success that in New York at Times Square has been shown in a movie theater for 24 hours, around the clock. In 1941 the film was released in a new version, as more of the Production Code was inkraftgetreten. Three scenes in the film were censored: A scene in which a homosexual acting Schneider appears, a scene where Matt and Mamie wallow in bed and a scene in which Tom is seduced by a woman [1] .

In 1954 the film was released again in a new version. The film begins with a prologue, which distances itself from the gangsters as Tom Powers and Caesar “Rico” Bandello. Caesar “Rico” Bandello the main character of the film Little Caesar (played by Edward G. Robinson ).

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