7.2/10
565
15 user 17 critic

Heat Lightning (1934)

Passed | | Crime, Drama | 3 March 1934 (USA)
In the Mohave Desert, Olga runs a gas station, lunch counter, and auto camp with her younger sister Myra. In a 24-hour period, Olga must deal with Myra's desire to go to a town dance with a... See full summary »

Director:

Mervyn LeRoy

Writers:

Leon Abrams (from the original play by), George Abbott (from the original play by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Aline MacMahon ... Olga
Ann Dvorak ... Myra
Preston Foster ... George
Lyle Talbot ... Jeff
Glenda Farrell ... Mrs. Tifton
Frank McHugh ... Frank - the chauffeur
Ruth Donnelly ... Mrs. Ashton-Ashley
Theodore Newton ... Steve Laird
Willard Robertson ... Everett Marshall
Harry C. Bradley ... 'Popsy' - a Businessman
James Durkin ... The Sheriff
Jane Darwell ... Gladys - the Wife
Edgar Kennedy ... Herbert - the Husband
Muriel Evans ... Blonde Cutie
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Storyline

In the Mohave Desert, Olga runs a gas station, lunch counter, and auto camp with her younger sister Myra. In a 24-hour period, Olga must deal with Myra's desire to go to a town dance with a cad, the appearance by happenstance of George, an old boyfriend whose conduct is never above suspicion, and the overnight presence of two women recently divorced in Reno, who, with a chauffeur, are carrying valuable jewels. George gets wind of the jewels and plays with Olga's heartstrings to set up a robbery. Myra arranges to sneak off with her beau. It's hot, and the heat lightening is crackling on the horizon. Is Olga's life of peace and hard work in the desert about to change for the worse? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HURLED AT YOUR HEART Like a Bolt from the Blue! (Print Ad- Buffalo Evening News, ((Buffalo NY)) 24 May 1934) See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First film where Aline MacMahon receives top billing. See more »

Goofs

While Herbert is trying to remove the radiator cap, Gladys begins to walk around him, and a shadow of the boom microphone is visible on the hood of the car. See more »

Quotes

George: Want another barbequed sandwich?
Jeff: I can hear the warden ask if I have any last words before they turn on the heat and you ask if I want another barbequed sandwich?
See more »

Connections

Version of Highway West (1941) See more »

User Reviews

 
Blowsy character-driven piece with some sharp dialogue...though it should have been grittier
15 March 2010 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

Interesting drama which bristles with pungent, often very amusing dialogue. Two sisters (a homely, bossy man-hater and a restless younger beauty who likes to kick up her heels) battle amongst themselves while running a filling station/diner/motel in the California desert; a pair of casual-acting bank robbers stop in one afternoon on their way to the border, one of whom knows the elder sister very well. Adaptation of Leon Abrams and George Abbott's play ran into trouble with the Catholic Legion of Decency in 1934--one presumes over the frank talk and implications of man-woman intimacy--yet the most surprising thing about this piece is the fact Aline MacMahon's plain, resentful Olga has a romantic past at all! Possibly conceived at one point as a lesbian, the character of Olga (who trades in her head-bandanna and dungarees for make-up and a frilly dress) is the story's central focus, and yet she doesn't emerge as a convincing, fully thought-out creation. The material goes noticeably soft at the halfway mark to accommodate Olga's actions, making the censorship stories even more ridiculous in hindsight. Still, the film has a quick pace and a lively cast, colorful patter between the guests, and a satisfying finish. **1/2 from ****


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 March 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Heat Lightning See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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