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Boom Town (Sous-titres français) [Import]

4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Joyce Compton, Sally Payne, William 'Billy' Benedict
  • Directors: George Sidney, Jack Conway, Rudolf Ising
  • Writers: James Edward Grant, John Lee Mahin, Morey Amsterdam
  • Format: Black & White, Closed-captioned, DVD-Video, Subtitled, NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • Release Date: June 20 2006
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B000F7CMP4
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Product Description

There may be a pair of impressive ladies in the cast, but don't be fooled--Boom Town is a cool love-hate buddy movie from the get-go. Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy are oil wildcatters who meet during a Texas strike, take an instant dislike to each other, go into business together, tussle over a woman, break up, reunite, etc., etc. The film spans years, and various parts of the continent, as each man gets rich and goes bust with regularity. Claudette Colbert, re-teaming with It Happened One Night co-star Gable, is the woman who comes between them, and Hedy Lamarr presents a more exotic temptation later on. Another star here is the dialogue by veteran screenwriter John Lee Mahin, which--despite the wild, credulity-bending twists in the story--is chockfull of salty, slangy talk. The early scenes in the Texas town are crammed with believable oil jargon and great period touches (such as an entrepreneur who charges money to walk on planks across a muddy street). Director Jack Conway (Saratoga) gets the roughneck appeal of the material, and a sequence involving an oil fire is a knockout. Gable and Tracy, who had worked together so memorably in San Francisco, are a terrific match: Gable is all straight-ahead gusto, declaiming every line, as Tracy underplays to crafty effect. Nice supporting parts for Frank Morgan and Chill Wills span the entire movie, which ends, curiously, in a courtroom and a speech about capitalism. --Robert Horton

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) presents "BOOM TOWN" (1940) - (119 min/B&W) -- Starring: Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Claudette Colbert, Hedy Lamarr, Frank Morgan, Lionel Atwill & Chill Wills

Directed by Jack Conway

Clark Gable as "Big John" McMasters and Spencer Tracy is "Square John" Sand both seek their fortunes in the Texas oil fields. They simultaneously fall in love with Elizabeth, but it's "Big John" who wins out. When both Johns grow rich on oil, "Big John" lets money go to his head, and he begins neglecting his wife for the yummy Karen, the precocious companion of businessman Harry Compton. "Square John", who still carries a torch for Elizabeth but doesn't want to see her heart broken, tries to buy off Karen; when this fails, he decides to ruin "Big John" financially. But when "Big John" is charged with violating anti-trust rules by the crooked Compton, "Square John" rushes to the side of his old pal.

Oscar Nominated for Best Cinematography (black & white) & Best Special Effects.

Special footnote: -- Clark Gable was anxious to do the film because his father had been an oil rigger, and Gable himself had worked on oil rigs in Oklahoma before becoming an actor ~ Boom Town saw the re-teaming of Claudette Colbert and Clark Gable - back together on screen for the first time since the scintillating 'It Happened One Night' (1934) ~ This is the third (and last) pairing of those two "mega-stars": Clark Gable & Spencer Tracy. They were to appear together on two previous occasions - 'San Francisco' (1936) & 'Test Pilot' (1938).

1. Jack Conway (Director)
Date of Birth: 17 July 1887 - Graceville, Minnesota
Date of Death: 11 October 1952 - Pacific Palisades, California

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Format: VHS Tape
Boom Town is entertainment. This movie was made in 1940 and is based on a short story. It begins with a partnership/friendship between Gable & Tracey as Big John McMasters & John Sand. The underlying philosophy in the movie is meant to show that no matter how much money you have you were still happier when things were tough! Each man earns and loses about 2 to 3 fortunes apiece. I have lived long enough to have seen the complete movie before our modern day censors got to it, so I can tell you that you cannot get an uncut edition of this movie and this VHS is NO exception. They removed the Indian peace pipe smoking scene when McMasters(Gable) signs a land deal with Oklahoma indians.(pretending that people never smoked.) This subtle cutting is done to a lot of old films and is really silly.Also the "melting" scenes with the sad horn music when people lose all their money have been cut out also. The only one left in is when Compton United goes broke in the oil war with McMasters. Curiously we DO get to see the US Government prosecution of Oil barons and not necessarily in favorable light. This film also takes a shot at the IRS and complains about taxation! (Where are the censors for this stuff?) Anyway, Frank Morgan is great in this work as Luthur Aldridge and young Chill Wills is excellent as a deadly crack shot deputy who just wants to be a ranch cook. The Oil fire scenes received an Academy award for effects and it was top notch for 1940. Girls invade and cause a lot of trouble between McMasters and Sand and their ability to make money but everything comes clean and happy in the end. Well worth a view but please.... if the DVD ever comes out put ALL the film back together!
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Format: VHS Tape
When I was on my Clark Gable kick some years back, I was overjoyed to find a copy of "Boom Town" in the video rental place. I'd seen a clip or two from it, and the prospect of seeing Gable, Tracy, and Colbert all together in one film was delightful to me. I mean, this would be the intersection of two great chemistry sets, Tracy and Gable of "San Francisco" with Gable and Colbert of "It Happened One Night". How could it possibly miss? Well, it did.
The buddy relationship of Gable and Tracy was great. The love triangle between Gable, Tracy, and Colbert was good. But why oh why do we have to go on a bit to have now married Gable cheat on wife Colbert with Hedy Lamarr? First off, I thought that was a terrible plot development, period. Why would he do that? Why was this necessary? No. Bad idea. What really sealed the fate of this being a wrong-o is the fact that Hedy is an awful actress. Yes, she's a beauty all right, but especially in the company of real fine competent acting talent, she stuck out like a sore thumb.
So, "Boom Town" was quite a disappointment for me, after years of expectation. Sometimes two plus two does not equal four, if your script is not good. Catch Gable-Tracy and Gable-Colbert in their separate better films.
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Format: VHS Tape
First, some movie trivia. Fans of WINGS OF DESIRE, the 1987 Wim Wenders film, should take note of the tailor that Clark Gable summons later in the film to make "twenty" suits for Spencer Tracy. The actor is Curt Bois, and he later played the part of "Homer" in WINGS OF DESIRE, the very old man first found in the library in Berlin, who aspires to be a witness to all he has seen in his life (ironically, one of the things he remembers are the atrocities of WW II, during which time Bois was living in Hollywood).
On one level this movie is about wild catters hunting for oil, but in reality it is about love and friendship. The oil industry actually serves as a backdrop, and after the first few scenes, it serves merely as a backdrop to the ups and downs of the main two characters. To be honest, it might be hard to watch if the three leads weren't played by such superb actors, and if excellent character actors weren't filling key minor roles. Luckily, Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, and especially Spencer Tracy make this film truly worth watching.
I have trouble with Clark Gable in most of his films. He always has a super macho attitude towards women, carries a chip the size of North Dakota on his shoulder, and is more beset by false pride than any actor in the history of film. He also comes across as frequently pretty stupid, a fact emphasized in George Clooney's imitation of him in O BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU? Still, he did possess an undeniable screen presence. He and Claudette Colbert do not here have the kind of chemistry that they had in IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT, but they nevertheless match up well onscreen.
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