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Hit the Road (1941)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Comedy | 27 June 1941 (USA)
Kids look to get revenge when their fathers are all killed in a mob war.



(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Bobs Watson ...
Patience Ryan
Walter Kingsford ...
Colonel Smith
Spike the Butcher


Tommy (Billy Halop), "Pig (Huntz Hall)," "String(Gabriel Dell)," and "Ape (Bernard Punsly)" are all inmates of a reform school, along with little "Pesky" (Bobs Watson),and they are orphan sons of deceased members of the Valentine Gang which was wiped out by Spike the Butcher (edward Pawley') and his gang a few years earlier. The only survivor of the Valentine gang was Valentine and he was sent to prison. Later the boys are paroled to the custody of a man using the name of James J. Ryan (Barton MacLane), but Ryan is really Valentine, who has served his sentence, and is living quietly on a stock ranch with his wife Mary Ryan (Gladys George). Ryan (now reformed) is trying to raise $50,000 to build a trade school to help unfortunate boys. But Tom isn't all reformed yet and meets up with a stranger who enlists him in a conspiracy to steal the money. The stranger turns out to be none other than Spike the Butcher, the man responsible for killing Tom's and the other four boy's fathers. Tom ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Plot Keywords:

gang | stranger | school | revenge | reform | See All (49) »


IT'S A RIOT OF ACTION AND LAUGHS! (original print ad-all caps) See more »


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

27 June 1941 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The last picture in which the boys were billed as he 'Dead End Kids.' Subsequently they were the 'East Side Kids' and ultimately the 'Bowery Boys.' See more »


[To Tom, the leader of the Little Tough Guys]
Molly Ryan: You've got a swell chance to steer your mob right. Don't muff it!
See more »


Follows They Made Me a Criminal (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

No great pretensions
21 October 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Four of the original Dead End Kids play the sons of former gang members of Barton MacLane's mob. MacLane went up for income tax evasion, the bane of organized crime. His gang including the fathers of these kids were wiped out by a rival gang headed by the as yet unapprehended Edward Pawley.

MacLane's now out and his wife and daughter have a nice ranch they're living on when juvenile reformatory warden Eily Mahlon persuades MacLane to take on Billy Halop, Bernard Punsley, Huntz Hall, and Gabriel Dell and young Bobs Watson who's attached himself to the older boys as wards. Wife Gladys George and daughter Evelyn Ankers warm to the idea, but the kids aren't having any if MacLane doesn't plan to return to his criminal ways.

In the meantime Pawley still wants to settle with MacLane so things you know will get lively.

Hit The Road is young basic B picture programmer to go with some bigger budget Universal feature, possibly a Deanna Durbin or an Abbott&Costello feature. There's either some sloppy editing or the version I saw was butchered for television. I do remember seeing this some 40 years ago on television. It's an easy to take film without any great pretensions.

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