|A Slight Case of Murder|
|Directed by||Lloyd Bacon|
|Produced by||Samuel Bischoff|
|Written by||Earl Baldwin|
|Based on||A Slight Case of Murder|
by Damon Runyon and Howard Lindsay
|Starring||Edward G. Robinson|
|Music by||Heinz Roemheld (uncredited)|
|Edited by||James Gibbon|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros.|
|February 26, 1938|
A Slight Case of Murder is a 1938 American comedy film directed by Lloyd Bacon. The film is based on the 1935 play by Damon Runyon and Howard Lindsay. The offbeat comedy stars Edward G. Robinson spoofing his own gangster image as Remy Marco.
With the end of Prohibition, bootlegger Remy Marco ("Marko" in a sequence of the film) becomes a legitimate brewer; but he slowly goes broke because the beer he makes tastes terrible, and everyone is afraid to tell him so. After four years, with bank officers preparing to foreclose on the brewery, he retreats to his Saratoga summer home, only to find four dead mobsters who meant to ambush him, but were killed by their confederate whom they meant to betray. More and more problems begin to pop up in the life of the former bootlegger, as he has taken in a bratty orphan, and his daughter comes home with a fiancé that turns out to be a state cop.
|Edward G. Robinson||Remy Marco|
|Jane Bryan||Mary Marco|
|Ruth Donnelly||Nora Marco|
|Willard Parker||Dick Whitewood|
|John Litel||Mr. Post, banker|
|Harold Huber||Giuseppe 'Gip' ("Guiseppe" in the film credits)|
|Eric Stanley||Mr. Ritter, banker|
|Paul Harvey||Mr. Whitewood|
|Margaret Hamilton||Mrs. Cagle|
|Bobby Jordan||Douglas Fairbanks Rosenbloom|
The movie continues to receive positive reviews. A Classic Film Guide review calls it "a satisfying comedy, which is enhanced by some great character work by veteran supporting players": Allen Jenkins, Edward Brophy, and Harold Huber as members of Remy's former gang gone legitimate; Margaret Hamilton as Mrs. Cagie, director of the orphanage where Marco grew up; and Paul Harvey as Marco's daughter's prospective father-in-law.
On April 8, 1945, Old Gold Comedy Theatre presented an adaptation of the film on NBC radio. The 30-minute program starred Edward G. Robinson and Allen Jenkins. On January 24, 1954, it was presented on NBC Star Playhouse starring Edward G. Robinson.
Although not an adaptation, Sylvester Stallone's movie Oscar (1991) bears a resemblance to the plot (minus the corpses), and all three movies can trace their ancestry to Molière's The Bourgeoise Gentleman.
- "Classic Film Guide". web.archive.org. May 16, 2011.
- "Those Were the Days". Nostalgia Digest. Vol. 43 no. 4. Autumn 2017. p. 33.