Top Speed (film)

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Top Speed
TopSpeed1930.jpg
Directed by Mervyn LeRoy
Written by Humphrey Pearson
Henry McCarty
Based onTop Speed
by Harry Ruby
Guy Bolton
Bert Kalmar
Starring Joe E. Brown
Bernice Claire
Jack Whiting
Frank McHugh
Laura Lee
Music by Joseph Burke
Al Dubin
Leonid S. Leonardi
Larry Ceballos
Cinematography Sidney Hickox
Edited by Harold Young
Distributed by First National Pictures
A Subsidiary of Warner Bros.
Release date
  • August 24, 1930 (1930-08-24)
Running time
73 min.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

Top Speed is a 1930 American Pre-Code musical comedy film released by First National Pictures, a subsidiary of Warner Brothers. It was based on a 1929 stage musical of the same name by Harry Ruby, Guy Bolton and Bert Kalmar. The film stars Joe E. Brown, Bernice Claire, Jack Whiting, Laura Lee, and Frank McHugh. [1]

Contents

Synopsis

Elmer Peters (Brown) and Gerald Brooks (Whiting), bond clerks on a weekend vacation, are on the run from a local sheriff after Elmer attempts to fish in a "no fishing" area. The two men arrive at an expensive hotel where they rescue Virginia Rollins (Claire) and Babs Green (Lee), who have just been involved in a car accident. Gerald falls in love with Virginia, and Elmer falls for Babs, and the two fugitives decide to remain at the hotel for the rest of the weekend. Elmer begins boasting to hotel guests and personnel; soon, everyone believes that he and Gerald are millionaires, and that Gerald is an expert boat racer.

Virginia's father (Edwin Maxwell) owns a speedboat that he plans to enter in a big race. After he fires his pilot, whom he caught taking a bribe, Virginia convinces her father to let Gerald pilot the boat. A competitor, Spencer Colgate (Edmund Breese), discovers that Gerald is a fraud and threatens to expose him unless he accepts $30,000 to throw the race. Gerald, unable to refuse such a princely sum, agrees. Virginia and her father learn during the race that Gerald took the payoff; but Gerald chooses love and honor over riches, and drives the boat to victory. After he wins, Gerald comes clean, and all is forgiven.

Cast

Lobby card Top Speed lobby card.jpg
Lobby card

Production

The film was completed as a full musical. However, due to increasing disfavor towards that genre from the public (beginning in late 1930), Warners chose to make many cuts to the film and much of the original music is missing or severely truncated. The Warner re-cut survives in the Library of Congress collection. [2]

Preservation

Music

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References

  1. The AFI Catalog of Feature Films 1893-1993:Top Speed
  2. Catalog of Holdings The American Film Institute Collection and The United Artists Collection at The Library of Congress, (<-book title) p.186 c.1978 by The American Film Institute