The Key (1934)

70-71 mins | Drama | 9 June 1934

Director:

Michael Curtiz

Writer:

Laird Doyle

Cinematographer:

Ernest Haller

Editor:

Thomas Richards

Production Designer:

Robert Haas

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The pre-release title of the film was Sue of Fury . According to modern sources, the picture was retitled High Peril in the late 1950s to avoid confusion with the 1958 British film called The Key , starring William Holden and Sophia Loren. Michael Curtiz replaced Archie Mayo when he became ill with a stomach ailment. Although modern sources indicate that Phil Regan does not appear in the film, even though he is included in the onscreen credits, he actually does appear briefly in the sequence in which "Andrew" captures "Conlan." Regan appears as the man in a cap who shoots at "Andrew" but is killed by ... More Less

The pre-release title of the film was Sue of Fury . According to modern sources, the picture was retitled High Peril in the late 1950s to avoid confusion with the 1958 British film called The Key , starring William Holden and Sophia Loren. Michael Curtiz replaced Archie Mayo when he became ill with a stomach ailment. Although modern sources indicate that Phil Regan does not appear in the film, even though he is included in the onscreen credits, he actually does appear briefly in the sequence in which "Andrew" captures "Conlan." Regan appears as the man in a cap who shoots at "Andrew" but is killed by him. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
10 Feb 34
p. 2.
Daily Variety
13 Feb 34
p. 3.
Daily Variety
16 Feb 34
p. 4.
Daily Variety
15 Mar 34
p. 2.
Film Daily
31 May 34
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Feb 34
p. 11.
International Photographer
1 Mar 34
p. 17.
Motion Picture Daily
31 May 34
p. 11.
Motion Picture Herald
14 Apr 34
p. 36.
Motion Picture Herald
26 May 34
p. 41.
Variety
5 Jun 34
p. 12.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
2d cam
Asst cam
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Vitaphone Orch cond
PRODUCTION MISC
Chief elec
Chief grip
Props
Still photog
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play The Key by Robert Gore-Browne and Joseph Lee Hardy (London, 8 Sep 1933).
SONGS
"There's a Cottage in Killarney," music and lyrics by Allie Wrubel and Mort Dixon.
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Sue of Fury
Release Date:
9 June 1934
Production Date:
9 February--15 March 1934
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
23 May 1934
Copyright Number:
LP4726
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
70-71
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

In 1920, in response to Irish demands for home rule, the British impose martial law on their neighboring nation. Andrew Kerr is a member of the "Black and Tans," a British army unit sent to maintain order in Ireland. He is troubled by his position, as his mother was Irish, but his wife Norah consoles him, saying that this is politics, not war. Bill Tennant, an old army friend of Andrew, is sent to Dublin and rents the flat below the Kerrs's. When Andrew invites him up for tea, Bill realizes that Norah is a woman he was in love with years before but left because he did not want to be tied down. Upset by his meeting with Norah, Bill has a drink in a pub. When he spots Bill's uniform underneath his overcoat, O'Duffy, a go-between, gives him a password to use if he should ever want to help the Irish. That evening, Andrew is assigned to search the dock area for Peadar Conlan, one of the Irish leaders, who is a fugitive from justice. Norah begs him not to leave, but he cannot shirk his duty. While he is gone, Bill and Norah rekindle their romance. When Andrew returns after capturing Conlan, he finds them together, at which point Norah tells him that she knew Bill before and still loves him. Andrew runs out into the streets, where he is recognized as the man who captured Conlan and is held hostage for Conlan's release. Norah, having realized that she really loves Andrew, tells Bill that he is a romantic dreamer. When the British refuse ... +


In 1920, in response to Irish demands for home rule, the British impose martial law on their neighboring nation. Andrew Kerr is a member of the "Black and Tans," a British army unit sent to maintain order in Ireland. He is troubled by his position, as his mother was Irish, but his wife Norah consoles him, saying that this is politics, not war. Bill Tennant, an old army friend of Andrew, is sent to Dublin and rents the flat below the Kerrs's. When Andrew invites him up for tea, Bill realizes that Norah is a woman he was in love with years before but left because he did not want to be tied down. Upset by his meeting with Norah, Bill has a drink in a pub. When he spots Bill's uniform underneath his overcoat, O'Duffy, a go-between, gives him a password to use if he should ever want to help the Irish. That evening, Andrew is assigned to search the dock area for Peadar Conlan, one of the Irish leaders, who is a fugitive from justice. Norah begs him not to leave, but he cannot shirk his duty. While he is gone, Bill and Norah rekindle their romance. When Andrew returns after capturing Conlan, he finds them together, at which point Norah tells him that she knew Bill before and still loves him. Andrew runs out into the streets, where he is recognized as the man who captured Conlan and is held hostage for Conlan's release. Norah, having realized that she really loves Andrew, tells Bill that he is a romantic dreamer. When the British refuse to trade Andrew for Conlan, Bill uses the password O'Duffy gave him to negotiate for Andrew's freedom. He forges a release for Conlan. Bill is arrested, but he has reunited Norah and Andrew. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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