Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

You Dirty Rat! You Killed My Brother!


Palmerin
 Share

Recommended Posts

Part of the act of Ernie Wise of Morecambe and Wise was an imitation of Cagney that included the title phrase, which does not belong to any of JC's movies.

Where did this bit of apocrypha originate? FWIW, I have two theories:

1. One of those stand up comedians that specialize in celebrity impressions delivered that phrase in the style of such people as Robinson, Tracy and Gable; his impression of Cagney was so successful that people ended up thinking it was the real thing;

2. It is indeed a real movie quotation that just happens to have been attributed to JC by mistake. Actors churned out so many movies in the 1930s--practically a new one every week--that it's almost impossible to keep track of who said what in which movie.

What do you think?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Part of the act of Ernie Wise of Morecambe and Wise was an imitation of Cagney that included the title phrase, which does not belong to any of JC's movies.

Where did this bit of apocrypha originate? FWIW, I have two theories:

1. One of those stand up comedians that specialize in celebrity impressions delivered that phrase in the style of such people as Robinson, Tracy and Gable; his impression of Cagney was so successful that people ended up thinking it was the real thing;

2. It is indeed a real movie quotation that just happens to have been attributed to JC by mistake. Actors churned out so many movies in the 1930s--practically a new one every week--that it's almost impossible to keep track of who said what in which movie.

What do you think?

 

Watch the following clip of Jimmy accepting the 1974 AFI Life Achievement Award here(especially starting at the 4:00 minute mark) Palmerin, and maybe this'll answer your question...

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cagney calls a character a "Dirty rat!" in Taxi! (1932), and now the studio's going around advertising that movie as the one where He Said It.  (Even though he didn't.)

The "Killed my brother" follow-through, though, is supposed to be a half-remembered callback to "Public Enemy"--back when we only knew certain iconic old movies from late-night stations, and had never heard of Taxi--where he didn't say it there either.

 

(And on a side note, I remember when we got the British Comedy Invasion in the 70's, after Monty Python:

The BBC brought over all the Britcoms like Fawlty Towers and The Goonies, but after Thames had a big hit syndicating Benny Hill, non-BBC syndicators tried bringing every other variety comic over--The Two Ronnies had a long PBS run, Dave Allen did a minor successful syndication, but when they tried bringing Morecambe & Wise over, it lasted a few short weeks of thoroughly baffled audiences staring "What am I watching??  I'm guessing it's supposed to be funny?"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On a similar note, did Cary Grant ever say "Judy, Judy, Judy"? There was a teacher at my middle school who used to quote that line, but I still don't know what it's from, if it indeed was ever said.

 

It's a misquote of a line Cary Grant says to young Rita Hayworth playing a character named "Judy" in the film ONLY ANGELS HAVE WINGS, sewhite. All Cary ever says is actually "Hello, Judy".

 

Now, according the Trivia page of this film in the IMDb website and how this misquote became so identified as Cary's signature catchphrase, well, read it for yourself here. I suppose there might be some truth to it...

 

Cary Grant is often incorrectly quoted as saying "Judy, Judy, Judy" to Rita Hayworth in this movie. The misquote is attributed to impressionist Larry Storch who, when in the middle of one of his nightclub acts, saw Judy Garland walk in as he was impersonating Grant. Apparently this is how he addressed her.
 
 
(...and so perhaps we can credit "F-Troop's" Corporal Agarn as the originator of this...and btw, Storch's younger brother Jay Lawrence was also a gifted impressionist back in the day...you may remember him doing impressions of famous movies stars as sort of a comedy relief thing in Billy Wilder's STALAG 17)
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cagney calls a character a "Dirty rat!" in Taxi! (1932), and now the studio's going around advertising that movie as the one where He Said It.  (Even though he didn't.)

The "Killed my brother" follow-through, though, is supposed to be a half-remembered callback to "Public Enemy"--back when we only knew certain iconic old movies from late-night stations, and had never heard of Taxi--where he didn't say it there either.

 

Thanks for the explanation; 'tis really amazing and annoying how movie quotes get distorted beyond recognition, just as happened with PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

© 2023 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...