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Little Caesar

Released Jan 3, 1931 1h 17m Crime Drama List
92% Tomatometer 25 Reviews 75% Audience Score 5,000+ Ratings An aspiring small-town criminal, Caesar "Rico" Bandello (Edward G. Robinson) relocates to Chicago to hit the big time, accompanied by his buddy, Joe Massara (Douglas Fairbanks Jr.). While Rico makes a name for himself in the underworld, Joe decides to leave the life of crime and ventures into show business, where he meets the lovely dancer Olga (Glenda Farrell). Though Rico and Joe try to honor their friendship, eventually their choices take them down dramatically different paths. Read More Read Less Watch on Fandango at Home Buy Now

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Little Caesar

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Little Caesar

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Critics Consensus

Little Caesar achieves epic stature thanks to Edward G. Robinson's volcanic charisma, forging a template for the big-screen mobster archetype that's yet to be surpassed.

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Critics Reviews

View All (25) Critics Reviews
SMH Staff Sydney Morning Herald Ed. G. Robinson gives an excellent character study of the scheming Rico, and an effective cast also includes Douglas Fairbanks, Jun., Stanley Fields, Ralph Ince, Glenda Faxrell, and Sidney Blackmer. Jun 17, 2020 Full Review Richard Brody New Yorker LeRoy's coldly efficient direction-due less to his own artistry than to the constraints of sound recording in its first years-imposes a static rigor on the action and lends the actor's diction and gestures a sculptural, granitic force. Sep 7, 2015 Full Review Variety Staff Variety No director could ask for more than Edward G. Robinson's contribution. Here, no matter what he has to say, he's entirely convincing. Oct 31, 2007 Full Review E. L. Espectador Cinelandia The cast is well chosen for a movie of the class. [Full review in Spanish] Sep 1, 2022 Full Review Mike Massie Gone With The Twins This renowned classic is more memorable for Robinson's sensational performance than for the plot. Rated: 6/10 Jul 27, 2020 Full Review Dan Jardine Cinemania Edward G. Robinson's gravelly snarl and sociopathic disdain for human conventions became the template for countless future gangster anti-heroes Rated: 76/100 Jul 4, 2013 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (254) audience reviews
David F The rise and fall of a gangster, Warner Bros.-style. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 05/01/24 Full Review Steve D Hard to care about anyone involved despite the talented cast. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/22/24 Full Review Leaburn O Edward Robinson made for a cracking gangster and owns the picture. Enjoyable, short, early gangster flick that set the tone for future films of the genre. Plot is fairly thin but it holds up over the short runtime. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 07/03/23 Full Review Louisa E I wasn't prepared to like this movie after watching The Public Enemy and loving it. But I enjoyed this movie quite a lot. The plot was fantastic. I liked the character of Rico, and there was a lot of character development and twists and turns. The acting was pretty good. Yes, I get irritated by Robinson's voice, but it's iconic and synonymous with gangsters now, so I put up with it. His acting was good, and I was also impressed with George E. Stone, who plays Otero. I've seen him in other movies without really registering he's in them, but I noticed him in this movie. Dougles Fairbanks Jr is also easy on the eye! There were some exciting cinematography choices with moving cameras and some interesting close-ups. It is one of the best movies for me regarding cinematography for the year. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 05/08/23 Full Review Zachary V Edward G. Robinson can really give James Cagney a run for his money for most convincing portrayal of a movie gangster; he's got that grim, slightly rubbery face that really got sent up in Dick Tracy (in fact, there's even a character named "Big Boy" in this movie). An enjoyable watch, though the promotional art suggested Little Caesar would be wielding a tommy gun, which he never does once in the film! Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 11/19/22 Full Review Deke P 1930? or 1932? I've seen both years as premier of this classic. So old that it still had a few text messages on the screen, like in previous silent movies. Love this CLASSIC Robinson, gangster movie. Saw it again on tv 4.23.2022 , and again saw a good part of it on 3.11.24 Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/11/24 Full Review Read all reviews
Little Caesar

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Cast & Crew

Five Star Final 91% 79% Five Star Final Angels With Dirty Faces 100% 92% Angels With Dirty Faces Marked Woman 100% 70% Marked Woman The Maltese Falcon 99% 91% The Maltese Falcon The Racket 100% 68% The Racket Discover more movies and TV shows. View More

Movie Info

Synopsis An aspiring small-town criminal, Caesar "Rico" Bandello (Edward G. Robinson) relocates to Chicago to hit the big time, accompanied by his buddy, Joe Massara (Douglas Fairbanks Jr.). While Rico makes a name for himself in the underworld, Joe decides to leave the life of crime and ventures into show business, where he meets the lovely dancer Olga (Glenda Farrell). Though Rico and Joe try to honor their friendship, eventually their choices take them down dramatically different paths.
Director
Mervyn LeRoy
Screenwriter
Robert N. Lee
Production Co
First National Pictures
Genre
Crime, Drama
Original Language
English
Release Date (Theaters)
Jan 3, 1931, Limited
Release Date (Streaming)
Nov 21, 2016
Runtime
1h 17m
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