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      Ball of Fire

      Now Playing 1h 51m Comedy List
      100% Tomatometer 28 Reviews 89% Audience Score 2,500+ Ratings Hoping to update his chapter on modern slang, encyclopedia writer Professor Bertram Potts (Gary Cooper) ventures into a chic nightclub. Inside, he meets the snarky burlesque performer "Sugarpuss" O'Shea (Barbara Stanwyck). Fascinated by her command of popular jargon, Potts invites her to stay with him. But, unknown to Potts, she is the fiancée of a mobster (Dana Andrews) and wanted by the police. In the ensuing mayhem, Potts must stay on his toes or be swallowed up by bigger fish. Read More Read Less Now in Theaters Now Playing Buy Tickets

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      Ball of Fire

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      Ball of Fire

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      Critics Consensus

      A splendidly funny twist on the story of Snow White, Ball of Fire boasts a pair of perfect leads in Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck.

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      Critics Reviews

      View All (28) Critics Reviews
      Charles Taylor Village Voice Ball of Fire came out five days before Pearl Harbor. You can imagine Americans listening to its flood of slang and knowing exactly what they were fighting for. Dec 22, 2015 Full Review TIME Magazine Actor Cooper plays his Mr. Deeds role with the authority of long familiarity, and Miss Stanwyck (once Ruby Stevens, of Brooklyn) is equally at home in hers. Feb 4, 2009 Full Review Variety Staff Variety Casting is meticulously perfect to make every character a caricature of itself. Aug 14, 2007 Full Review Mike Massie Gone With The Twins Cooper and Stanwyck are likable even when they aren't playing roles best suited to their specific screen personalities. Rated: 6/10 Dec 7, 2020 Full Review Aurelio Pego Cine-Mundial The comedy never stops being pleasant. [Full Review in Spanish] Sep 11, 2019 Full Review Tim Brayton Antagony & Ecstasy Great, deep, humane, well-built comedy. But throw in Barbara Stanwyck's unbelievable act of character creation, and that's when Ball of Fire becomes its best self. Rated: 9/10 Mar 20, 2015 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

      View All (229) audience reviews
      Justin T Stanwyck at her finest. Cooper at his most endearing. Yes, it's a two hour romantic comedy, but every minute of Wilder's screenplay is pure genius and Hawks' direction is seamless. What a pure joy this film is. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 11/11/23 Full Review G M Thoroughly enjoyable and timeless classic Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 05/14/23 Full Review Nizar N Everything that has to be said about this movie has been said over the years. The Tomatometer score is enough by itself. One of the wittiest scripts I've ever seen in a movie, and the cast play it out so meticulously they make it seem like it was written with them in mind. There's even a dose of suspense and another one of music. And as if that isn't enough, Ball of Fire stars Barbara Stanwyk and Gary Cooper, and is directed by Howard Hawks, with Billy Wilder participating in the writing. What more could one ask for? Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review michael t This movie started out well enough with Barbara Stanwyck playing the Ball of Fire showgirl to good comedic effect. Where it bogged down was after the first third. The 7 dwarves theme was tedious throughout and the romantic element between Stanwyck and Cooper seemed pretty strained. I never find Gary Cooper an appealing romantic lead. Maybe women see something I don't. The movie dragged on about 20 minutes longer than they had interesting story elements to fill it with. It would have helped if it had been in color. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member Another Billy Wilder masterclass in script writing and comedy. And Barbara Stanwyck in the most stunning sequin dress you'll ever likely see on the silver screen. what more do you want? Besides the treasure trove of talent that went into making the film, its worth watching it simply to see Gene Krupe play the drums with a box of matches. A work of art, pure and simple. thank you to all those talented people who gave us this gem. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/27/23 Full Review mike v Ball of Fire is a 1941 American screwball comedy film directed by Howard Hawks 🎥 Meh, it passed the time. Sort of. 😕 "I LOVE HIM BECAUSE HE DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO KISS—THE JERK!" Rated 2 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

      Cast & Crew

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis Hoping to update his chapter on modern slang, encyclopedia writer Professor Bertram Potts (Gary Cooper) ventures into a chic nightclub. Inside, he meets the snarky burlesque performer "Sugarpuss" O'Shea (Barbara Stanwyck). Fascinated by her command of popular jargon, Potts invites her to stay with him. But, unknown to Potts, she is the fiancée of a mobster (Dana Andrews) and wanted by the police. In the ensuing mayhem, Potts must stay on his toes or be swallowed up by bigger fish.
      Director
      Howard Hawks
      Producer
      Samuel Goldwyn
      Screenwriter
      Charles Brackett, Billy Wilder, Billy Wilder, Thomas Monroe
      Distributor
      Embassy Pictures, Sultan Video, Home Box Office Home Video
      Production Co
      Samuel Goldwyn Company
      Genre
      Comedy
      Original Language
      English
      Release Date (Theaters)
      Dec 2, 1941, Wide
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Jul 8, 2020
      Runtime
      1h 51m
      Sound Mix
      Mono
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