I was sitting on the couch watching Bugs Bunny with two of the little Gooses, and it was the cartoon with the two gangster guys, the short little one with the hat over his eyes, and the tall fat one. And I was trying to explain to the two little Gooses how this was a take-off or “satire” on certain gangster movies from the 30s and 40s, but I couldn’t think of which ones, offhand.
So in order to educate my children about this essential component of American culture, I need to go down to the public library and look in their extensive video collection for the movies that comprise the genre known as “gangster movies from the 1930s and 1940s”. What titles should I look for? All that springs to mind is Little Caesar, but I know there must have been more. Scarface? The original one, not the Al Pacino remake.
And does anyone know precisely which characters in which movie this cartoon is parodying?
Just about any of the James Cagney and some of the Humphrey Bogart films. “Public Enemy” comes to mind.
Also check into films with Peter Lorre and Sidney Greenstreet.
As to the second part of your question, I don’t know who the two cartoon characters as suppose to be. James Cagney was short, and he did usually wear his hat slouched over one eye, and Sidney (Sydney?) Greenstreet was a big guy, so maybe…
I’ll gladly second “White Heat.” Cagney’s role was probably the most twisted and disturbing portrayal in American cinema of the Thirties. Not only is the final scene memorable, but the prison cafeteria scene when he’s informed of his mother’s death is unforgettable. The guy absolutely short-circuits.
At least in the Thirties and Forties, the psychotic nature of that character is rivaled only by Richard Widmark’s psycho hitman (can’t recall the movie, late 40’s) who pushes a screaming, pleading, wheelchair-bound old lady down a staircase.
“Brother Orchid” with E.G. Robinson and Bogart is a great gangster movie to watch with children. If any of you have ever seen it, you know why “Heartwarming” and “Gangster” are not mutually exclusive. I was able to obtain it through my (King County, WA) library system, so it’s possible your library may have it as well.
Sorry if this is a hijack - but are there any good 30’s & 40’s gangster movies that were made by a studio other than Warner’s? That would explain why you didn’t see them parodied as much in MGM cartoons like Tom & Jerry.