I Am the Law (1938) - Rotten Tomatoes

I Am the Law (1938)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

I Am the Law is arguably the best of the late-1930s films inspired by the racket-busting career of New York district attorney Thomas E. Dewey. Edward G. Robinson switches to the right side of the law as the Dewey counterpart, here named John Lindsay (!) A feisty, no-nonsense law professor, Lindsay is approached by a group of concerned citizens to act as special prosecutor to rid up their (unnamed) state of big-time lawbreakers. He wastes no time taking charge, storming into the prosecutor's office and firing anyone whom he suspects of being "on the take." With the help of his dedicated law students, who work alongside him for free, Lindsay purges the local government of such corrupt influences as Eugene Ferguson (Otto Kruger), the outwardly respectable "brains" behind the rackets. Among the minor pleasures in I Am the Law is watching Robinson dancing the Big Apple with gun moll Wendy Barrie in an early scene, and his firing of suspicious-looking Charles Halton with a brusque "Don't like your face! Never have! You've got shifty eyes and a weak chin!" (which, indeed, were Halton's screen trademarks). Barbara O'Neil, who the following year played Scarlet O'Hara's mother in Gone with the Wind, is quietly effective as Robinson's supportive wife.


Edward G. Robinson
as John Lindsay
Barbara O'Neil
as Jerry Lindsay
John Beal
as Paul Ferguson
Wendy Barrie
as Frances 'Frankie' Ballou
Otto Kruger
as Eugene Ferguson
Arthur Loft
as Tom Ross
Marc Lawrence
as Eddie Girard
Robert Middlemass
as Moss Kitchell
Ivan Miller
as Inspector Gleason
Louis Jean Heydt
as J.W. Butler
Edward Keane
as Witness
Harvey Clark
as Witness
James Flavin
as Witness
Frank Mayo
as Witness
James Bush
as Student
Anthony Nace
as Student
Will Morgan
as Student
Colton Scott
as Graduate Law Student
Gaylord "Steve" Pendleton
as Graduate Law Student
Marshall Ruth
as Graduate Law Student
Philip Grant
as Graduate Law Student
Alan Bruce
as Graduate Law Student
Nick Lukats
as Graduate Law Student
Walter Soderling
as Prof. Perkins
Bud Jamison
as Bartender
Iris Meredith
as Girard's Girl
Mary Brodel
as Hat Check Girl
Frank Bruno
as Gangster
Chick Collins
as Gangster
Jack Woody
as Gangster
Joseph De Stefani
as Cigar Store Proprietor
George C. Pearce
as Cigar Store Proprietor
Phillips Smalley
as University Dean
William Worthington
as Committee Man
Lane Chandler
as Policeman
Lee Shumway
as Police Sergeant
Lester Dorr
as Reporter
Reginald Simpson
as Photographer
Cyril Ring
as Photographer
Ernie Alexander
as Photographer
Bess Flowers
as Secretary
Lloyd Whitlock
as Headwaiter
Fay Helm
as Mrs. Butler
Bud Wiser
as Policeman
View All

Critic Reviews for I Am the Law

All Critics (2)

It's all fairly familiar, but the story takes so many hairpin turns and moves at such a breakneck speed that it's highly exciting entertainment.

July 22, 2019 | Full Review…

Unconvincing but lively formulaic crime drama programmer.

December 9, 2008 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

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I Am the Law Quotes

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