7.2/10
64
4 user 2 critic

Gang Busters (1942)

Detective Lt.Bill Bannister has the assignment to run down an unknown gang of terrorists spreading a net of crime over the city. Aiding him is Detective Tim Nolan, news photographer Vicki ... See full summary »

Directors:

Noel M. Smith (as Noel Smith), Ray Taylor

Writers:

Morgan Cox (original screenplay), Al Martin (original screenplay) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Gang Busters (TV Series 1952)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

True crime stories and their investigations are dramatized.

Stars: Robert Bice, Mike Ragan, Myron Healey
Gang Busters (1955)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Hardened criminal repeatedly breaks out of Oregon State Prison, eluding police for prolonged periods afterwards.

Director: Bill Karn
Stars: Myron Healey, Don C. Harvey, Sam Edwards
Certificate: Passed Action | Adventure | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The masked hero leads a fighting force to fight a villian who plots the conquest of The Republic of Mexico.

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Reed Hadley, Sheila Darcy, William Corson
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Homesteaders are moving into the valley settled many years ago by rancher Craig Dolan. He wants to keep them out by legal means but his nephew Bart brings in outlaws to drive them out. The ... See full summary »

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Robert Livingston, Chief Thundercloud, Silver Chief
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Dr. Zarkov return to the planet Mongo for an antidote to the Purple Death, which wreaking destruction on Earth. However, Ming the Merciless has other plans for them.

Directors: Ford Beebe, Ray Taylor
Stars: Buster Crabbe, Carol Hughes, Charles Middleton
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A murderous gang of counterfeiters has kidnapped the government's best engraver and is forcing him to print virtually undetectable phony money. The Secret Service sends its toughest agent, Jack Holt, and a female partner after the gang.

Director: James W. Horne
Stars: Jack Holt, Evelyn Brent, C. Montague Shaw
Certificate: Passed Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

To protect a magic talisman from being used for evil, a teenage boy named Billy Batson is given the power to become an adult superhero, Captain Marvel, with a single magic word: "Shazam!"

Directors: John English, William Witney
Stars: Tom Tyler, Frank Coghlan Jr., William 'Billy' Benedict
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kent Taylor ... Det. Lt. Bill Bannister
Irene Hervey ... Vicki Logan
Ralph Morgan ... Dr. Clayton Maxton - aka Prof. Mortis
Robert Armstrong ... Det. Tim Nolan
Richard Davies ... Happy Haskins
Joseph Crehan ... Police Chief Martin O'Brien
George Watts George Watts ... Mayor Hansen
Ralf Harolde ... Halliger
John Gallaudet ... Wilkinson
William Haade ... Mike Taboni
Victor Zimmerman Victor Zimmerman ... Ted Lane - aka Barnard (as Vic Zimmerman)
George J. Lewis ... Joey Morrison - aka Mason (as George Lewis)
John Berkes ... Mr. Grub (as Johnnie Berkes)
Pat O'Malley ... Crandall - Police Chemist
Edit

Storyline

Detective Lt.Bill Bannister has the assignment to run down an unknown gang of terrorists spreading a net of crime over the city. Aiding him is Detective Tim Nolan, news photographer Vicki Logan and reporter Happy Haskins. Bill finds that the gang's leader is a mysterious Professor Mortis and the gang is made up of known criminals officially listed in the police records as dead. Each has become of member of Mortis' "League of Murdered Men" after seemingly committing suicide by hanging while on death row. Bill eventually, after surviving a plane crash, being dynamited, dropped down a well and other nuisances, tracks the gang to two hideouts; a subterranean cell beneath the city's subways and a suburban mystery house. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime

Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 March 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lucha contra el crimen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

CHAPTER TITLES: 1. The League of Murdered Men, 2. The Death Plunge, 3. Murder Blockade, 4. Hangman's Noose, 5. Man Under Cover, 6. Under Crumbling Walls, 7. The Water Trap, 8. Murder By Proxy, 9. Gang Bait, 10., Mob Vengeance, 11. Wanted At Headquarters, 12. The Long Chance, 13. Law and Order. See more »

Goofs

Chapter 10: Bill and Tim are pursuing Haskins who has boarded a freight train, as Tim pulls up along side, the police car turns into a black coupe which strongly resembles 'Green Hornet's' "Black Beauty.' See more »

Quotes

[first lines in each chapter]
Announcer in title sequence: Universal presents "Gang Busters". Calling the police, calling the G-men, calling all America to war on the underworld. Gang Busters, with cooperation of law enforcement officers of the United States, presents a picture of the endless war of the police on the underworld, illustrating the clever operation of the law enforcement officers in the work of our citizens - the All-American crusade against crime!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Golden Girls: Zborn Again (1990) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Unusually fine serial
11 January 2007 | by paul panzerSee all my reviews

When I give this a 10, I mean 10 for a serial. I don't imagine that it's CITIZEN KANE, but it is easily one of the best serials, and the only one with significant horror elements. Universal's product is usually better-scripted and less formulaic than Republic's, and this is the best-scripted of them all, with the possible exception of the second version of SECRET AGENT X-9.

One element that lifts GANGBUSTERS above average is the presence of a henchman who complains about being sent on dangerous assignments. I've always wondered what kind of fool would take up something as dangerous and unrewarding as hench-work, and here at last a scriptwriter addresses the problem. There are other dashes of humor as well, but the story itself stands out for its morbidity, unusual in a film intended for children. It's easy to imagine the mothers of 1942 having to cope with the vivid nightmares of young viewers.

Ralph Morgan, the Wizard of Oz's real-life brother, is remarkably intense as the wicked Professor Mortis, who assembles his gang from executed criminals -- you heard me -- and conducts his nefarious business from a hideout under the subway (Who built it? Didn't anybody notice?). His goal isn't to rule the world or to do anything at all lucrative, just to have revenge on those who treated him unjustly. In other words, this time the Count of Monte Cristo is a bad guy.

The cliffhangers are exciting, and are resolved without TOO much cheating. The hero is bland, as serial heroes often are, but in this story something happens to the hero that is most unexpected. In fact the plot takes several quite remarkable turns, and the climax is unique. Great fun!


11 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 4 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed