6.1/10
31
3 user

Florida Special (1936)

Approved | | Comedy | 21 April 1936 (USA)
Newspaper reporter Bangs Carter and his rich buddy Wally Tucker end up on a train bound for Florida with jewel thieves and Wally's ex-girlfriend. Bangs falls for a passenger along the way as they try to catch the crooks.

Director:

Ralph Murphy

Writers:

Clarence Budington Kelland (story "Recreation Car"), David Boehm (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: Passed Mystery | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Kay Murdock (Lynn Bari) strolls into the Dixie Bar in Shanghai on November 1, 1941 and asks the bartender for a letter addressed to Captain Larsen, and is referred to Roy Bonnell (Preston ... See full summary »

Director: Irving Pichel
Stars: Preston Foster, Lynn Bari, Noel Madison
Wharf Angel (1934)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

"Mother Bright's" place on the lawless, waterfront district of the 'Barbary Coast' in San Francisco is the toughest of all saloons that can be found, and that is where "Turk", a stoker on a... See full summary »

Directors: William Cameron Menzies, George Somnes
Stars: Victor McLaglen, Dorothy Dell, Preston Foster
Crime Doctor (1943)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Amnesia victim, Robert Ordway, becomes the country's leading criminal psychologist. When he is hit on the head (by someone from his past) he suddenly remembers his previous life as a ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: Warner Baxter, Margaret Lindsay, John Litel
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A $50,000 life-insurance sale puts mild-mannered Henry Twinkle on the fast track at Ajax Insurance Company. Now he can marry his girl and climb the corporate ladder -- just as long as the ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Fenton
Stars: Lew Ayres, Rita Johnson, Lloyd Nolan
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A black cat is suspected of being possessed by the spirit of a elderly murdered woman.

Director: Erle C. Kenton
Stars: Noah Beery Jr., Lois Collier, Paul Kelly
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When gangsters threaten the life of the brother of a nurse, she and her superintendent make it look as if he died while a hospital patient.

Director: James Tinling
Stars: Jane Darwell, Sig Ruman, Sally Blane
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A diplomat is blackmailed by crooked vice cops into helping them frame prostitutes.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Paul Lukas, Kay Francis, Judith Wood
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When an island castle off the coast of Maine becomes the scene of a murder, a mystery writer tries to nab the criminal.

Director: George B. Seitz
Stars: Betty Compson, Lowell Sherman, Raymond Hatton
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

American agent faces an engrossing moral dilemma when he is parachuted into France to eliminate a suspected traitor in the French Resistance.

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: Eddie Albert, Paul Massie, Lillian Gish
Certificate: Passed Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Elna Curry, once a concert pianist, develops an unfounded jealousy of neighbor, Trudie Morrow. Elna who suffers from neurasthenia, believes that Trudie is having an affair with her husband,... See full summary »

Director: Stephen Roberts
Stars: Clive Brook, Frances Dee, Charles Ruggles
Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A young woman seeking adventure, and several other people have to outwit a mysterious killer on a remote island.

Director: Howard Bretherton
Stars: Lorna Gray, Peter Cookson, Grant Withers
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

When a dead body turns up in the home of a famous actress, two reporters (who also happen to be in love with one another) compete to get the real scoop.

Director: Henry Levin
Stars: George Brent, Joan Blondell, Adele Jergens
Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
Jack Oakie ... Bangs Carter
Sally Eilers ... Jerry Quinn
Kent Taylor ... Wally Tucker
Frances Drake ... Marina Landon
Claude Gillingwater ... Simeon Stafford
Sam Hearn Sam Hearn ... Schlepperman (as Sam 'Schlepperman' Hearn)
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Captain Timothy Harrigan
Sidney Blackmer ... Jack Macklyn
Matthew Betz ... Herman Weil (as Mathew Betz)
Dwight Frye ... Jenkins
Garry Owen Garry Owen ... Joe
Clyde Dilson Clyde Dilson ... Dominic
Mack Gray ... Louie
Stanley Andrews ... Armstrong, the Railroad President
Edit

Storyline

Newspaper reporter Bangs Carter and his rich buddy Wally Tucker end up on a train bound for Florida with jewel thieves and Wally's ex-girlfriend. Bangs falls for a passenger along the way as they try to catch the crooks.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

train | railway | See All (2) »

Taglines:

Stop! Look! Listen! danger, thrills, laughs, ahead! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 April 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Geheimnisvolle Passagiere See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

Soundtracks

It's You I'm Talking About
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Music by Harry Revel
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

All a-bored...

Movies that take place aboard a railway train are often very exciting: the characters are rushing along at a steady pace, even if the plot is just spinning in circles. 'Florida Special' feels like several other all-aboard movies, such as 'Sleepers West', but has much less excitement and it runs out of steam before it reaches the last stop. Railway metaphors aside, the biggest problem with 'Florida Special' is that it combines elements of comedy and caper thriller, without quite integrating them properly.

'Florida Special' is based on a story by Clarence Budington Kelland, and thereby hangs a tale. In the 1920s and '30s, Kelland was a phenomenally successful author whose books and stories sold in huge quantities, and which were frequently filmed ... yet today, in the 21st century, Kelland is utterly forgotten and all of his many works are long since out of print. The author Harlan Ellison (a friend of mine) has offered Kelland's example as a warning for all authors and artists, including himself: Ellison is currently very popular and financially successful, yet he has proposed that he might be only the latest incarnation of Clarence Budington Kelland, becoming utterly forgotten and out-of-print in his own lifetime.

Although not the leading role in 'Florida Special', the central character in this hodgepodge is Simeon Stafford, a dyspeptic miser played by Claude Gillingwater. (No stretch for him; Gillingwater was typecast as dyspeptic misers.) Frances Drake is excellent and beautiful, as always, in her role as Stafford's niece. Stafford has booked a trip on the Florida Special, carrying a large quantity of gemstones on his person. Naturally, a bunch of gangsters board the same train, planning to rob Stafford. On the same train is Jack Oakie, as a newspaperman with a strong suit in wisecracking. (Is there any other sort?) He runs afoul of the gangsters.

When 'Florida Special' was made in 1936, a cross-country journey by train was a big deal. The famous Super Chief (and several other trains) offered facilities rivalling those aboard a luxury ocean liner. Passengers spent the night sleeping in Pullman berths, carefully prepared by Pullman porters. Among the other amenities was (sometimes) a recreation car, with a creche to keep children occupied while their parents were elsewhere on the train.

Back to our story. Oakie and the gangsters cross paths with Sally Eilers, who portrays the hostess in the recreation van. This being a very predictable movie, she helps Oakie get the gang on the goodsters ... I mean, she helps him get the goods on the gangsters. There are some good things in 'Florida Special', but all of them were much better done in earlier movies, and sometimes also in their later remakes. It's a doddle that 'Florida Special' will never be remade. I'll rate this movie 5 out of 10. The production values are good, but the pace is much too lacklustre.


5 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 3 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 Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed