The Devil Is a Sissy (1936)





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The Devil Is a Sissy deserves an historical footnote as the only film to team three of the biggest child stars of the 1930s: Mickey Rooney, Jackie Cooper and Freddie Bartholomew. Bartholomew is a wealthy young English boy attending a New York "magnet" school, whose students are drawn from all walks of life. He is befriended by slum kid Rooney, son of a recently executed gangster, who in his own roughneck fashion helps Bartholomew to "assimilate" (Translation: He helps him to steal and evade the cops). Cooper is a middle-class gang leader with whom Rooney frequently clashes. Freddie attempts to fit in with his new chums by masterminding a break-in at a Park Avenue townhouse. None too soon, all three boys end up in juvenile court. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Classics , Comedy , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Warner Bros.


Jackie Cooper
as 'Buck' Murphy
Mickey Rooney
as 'Gig' Stevens
Freddie Bartholomew
as Claude Pierce
Ian Hunter
as Jay Pierce
Katherine Alexander
as Hilda Pierce
Gene Lockhart
as Mr. Murphy
Kathleen Lockhart
as Mrs. Murphy
Jonathan Hale
as Judge Holmes
Etienne Girardot
as Principal
Buster Slaven
as Six-Toes
Grant Mitchell
as Paul Krumpp
Harold Huber
as Willie
Frank Puglia
as Grandma
Mary Doran
as Mrs. Robbins
Buster Flavin
as Six Toes
Dorothy Peterson
as Mrs. Stevens
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Critic Reviews for The Devil Is a Sissy

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Full Review… | February 22, 2012
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Devil Is a Sissy


**1/2 (out of four) This strangely titled little movie does have its moments, but it doesn't date very well overall and many of the situations look pretty silly now. Freddie Bartholomew plays Claude, a prissy kid who moves in with his father in Manhattan. He instantly becomes a target for ridicule by the boys in school, but he is finally accepted into their gang when his boxing lessons pay off in a fight. But the kids take to crime. Nicely shot and interesting to a point, but it just isn't enduring enough.

Steve Smith
Steve Smith

If you can get past the title, you'll enjoy the wonderful performance by legendery child star Freddie Bartholomew, and Mickey Rooney as an angsty teen.

Judy Phillips
Judy Phillips

Boy, to see three stellar child stars working together is a real treat. Jackie Cooper, Freddie Bartholomew, and Mickey Rooney have great chemistry, and there are many magical moments when the three interact here. I've always loved Mickey Rooney in the Andy Hardy films, and he and Judy Garland have done so many great films together. Here, he's on the rise. What a great actor. I'm surprised I never put him on my favorite actor list. He's going up there right now.

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