6.8/10
386
18 user 5 critic

Mississippi (1935)

Crosby plays a Philadelpia Quaker engaged to a Southern belle. He becomes a social outcast when he refuses to fight a duel. Fields then hires him to perform on his riverboat, promoting him ... See full summary »

Directors:

A. Edward Sutherland, Wesley Ruggles (uncredited)

Writers:

Francis Martin (screen play), Jack Cunningham (screen play) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

The Bank Dick (1940)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Henpecked Egbert Sousé has comic adventures as a substitute film director and unlikely bank guard.

Director: Edward F. Cline
Stars: W.C. Fields, Cora Witherspoon, Una Merkel
Animation | Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The Bellows family causes comic confusion on an ocean liner, with time out for radio-style musical acts.

Directors: Mitchell Leisen, James P. Hogan
Stars: W.C. Fields, Martha Raye, Dorothy Lamour
Six of a Kind (1934)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When a respectable middle-class couple take a cross-country trip by auto, they share expenses with a decidedly oddball couple, none of whom know the car carries embezzled funds.

Director: Leo McCarey
Stars: Charles Ruggles, Mary Boland, W.C. Fields
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Fields wants to sell a film story to Esoteric Studios. On the way he gets insulted by little boys, beat up for ogling a woman, and abused by a waitress. He becomes his niece's guardian when... See full summary »

Director: Edward F. Cline
Stars: W.C. Fields, Gloria Jean, Leon Errol
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Larson E. Whipsnade runs a seedy circus which is perpetually in debt. His performers give him nothing but trouble, especially Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. Meanwhile, Whipsnade's son ... See full summary »

Directors: George Marshall, Edward F. Cline
Stars: W.C. Fields, Edgar Bergen, Charlie McCarthy
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Rightly suspected of illicit relations with the Masked Bandit, Flower Belle Lee is run out of Little Bend. On the train she meets con man Cuthbert J. Twillie and pretends to marry him for "... See full summary »

Director: Edward F. Cline
Stars: Mae West, W.C. Fields, Joseph Calleia
Poppy (1936)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Carny con artist and snake-oil salesman Eustace McGargle tries to stay one step ahead of the sheriff but is completely devoted to his beloved daughter Poppy.

Director: A. Edward Sutherland
Stars: W.C. Fields, Rochelle Hudson, Richard Cromwell
Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

During World War II, all the studios put out "all-star" vehicles which featured virtually every star on the lot--often playing themselves--in musical numbers and comedy skits, and were ... See full summary »

Directors: A. Edward Sutherland, John Rawlins
Stars: George Raft, Vera Zorina, Grace McDonald
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Tillie and Augustus Winterbottom are thought to be missionaries when they arrive to find Phineas Pratt trying cheat the Sheridans out of her father's inheritance, including a ferry ... See full summary »

Director: Francis Martin
Stars: W.C. Fields, Alison Skipworth, Baby LeRoy
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Hard-working, henpecked Ambrose Wolfinger takes off from work to go to a wrestling match with catastrophic consequences.

Directors: Clyde Bruckman, W.C. Fields
Stars: W.C. Fields, Mary Brian, Kathleen Howard
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A hard-drinking, socially-awkward inventor wrecks his daughter's chances of marriage into a rich family and bungles his own chances of success by selling one of his more practical inventions.

Director: Erle C. Kenton
Stars: W.C. Fields, Joan Marsh, Buster Crabbe
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Assorted wacky characters converge on a Chinese hotel to bid on a new invention, television.

Director: A. Edward Sutherland
Stars: W.C. Fields, Peggy Hopkins Joyce, Rudy Vallee
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bing Crosby ... Tom Grayson
W.C. Fields ... Commodore Jackson
Joan Bennett ... Lucy
Queenie Smith ... Alabam
Gail Patrick ... Elvira
Claude Gillingwater ... General Rumford
John Miljan ... Major Patterson
Jan Duggan ... Thrilled Passenger in Pilot House
Fred Kohler ... Captain Blackie (as Captain Blackie Jr.)
Edward Pawley ... Joe Patterson
Paul Hurst ... Hefty
Theresa Maxwell Conover ... Miss Markham
The Cabin Kids The Cabin Kids
John Larkin ... Rumbo
Libby Taylor Libby Taylor ... Lavinia
Edit

Storyline

Crosby plays a Philadelpia Quaker engaged to a Southern belle. He becomes a social outcast when he refuses to fight a duel. Fields then hires him to perform on his riverboat, promoting him as "Colonel Steel...the notorious Colonel Steel...the singing killer." The plot then follows a predictable course, but there are plenty of scenes featuring W.C. Fields. Written by Chris Wigert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 March 1935 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El cantor del río See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The lead role was intended for Lanny Ross, but Bing Crosby was cast because he was the more popular star instead. In fact, the songs were also selected especially for Ross, even though Crosby sings them in the final cut. See more »

Goofs

Commodore Jackson returns Captain Blackie's IOU, but it reappears in his pocket at 00:40:26; in the next shot it is empty again. See more »

Quotes

Commodore Jackson: Never mind what I told you! You do as I tell you!
See more »

Connections

Featured in W.C. Fields: Straight Up (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Roll, Mississippi
(1935) (uncredited)
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
Played on piano by Roy Bailey
Sung by a chorus during the opening credits, Queenie Smith and The Cabin Kids
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The Fighting Coward's Code of Honor
2 April 2001 | by lugonianSee all my reviews

"Mississippi" (Paramount, 1935), directed by A. Edward Sutherland, is a memorable event featuring crooner Bing Crosby and comedian WC Fields on screen for the only time. From the story by Booth Tarkington, it was filmed twice before: a 1924 silent with Cullen Landis and Mary Astor; and as a 1929 talkie titled "River of Romance" starring Buddy Rogers and Mary Brian, both for Paramount, but this third adaptation to the silver screen remains the best known.

Set in the South in the late 1800s, Bing Crosby plays Tom Grayson, a Northern gentleman engaged to marry Elvira Rumford (Gail Patrick), but loses his honor and her respect when he refuses to duel with Major Patterson (John Miljan), the man who actually wanted Elvira's hand in marriage. Tom leaves the plantation a disgrace, but before he goes, he is approached by Elvira's younger sister, Lucy (Joan Bennett) who tells him that she loves him. However, Tom, feeling this to be only a schoolgirl crush on her part, goes and bids the "little shrimp" farewell. Tom then joins a show boat headed by Commodore Orlando Jackson (WC Fields), who tries to teach him the meaning of defending his honor. Later, during a performance, Tom is threatened by a Captain Blackie (Fred Kohler Sr.) to stop singing, but he continues just the same. Because of this a fight ensues between Tom and Blackie, and Blackie is accidentally shot by his own pistol. This gives Tom confidence to go on singing to his audience and become a stronger person. With the help of Jackson, Tom is given the big build-up as the notorious "Singing Killer," and being the man who has killed more than one man, which isn't true. However, the ever more confident Tom (now sporting a mustache and looking more debonair) decides to the Rumford plantation and proves himself a braver man to General Rumford (Claude Gillingwater Sr.), Lucy and Elvira's Southern father. But which one of the sisters does Tom get to take back with him as his bride?

Aside from Fields' antics and his imaginative story telling leaving his on screen listeners to find very hard to believe, "Mississippi" is a welcome change for Bing Crosby, especially with his fighting scene with Kohler, which looks very realistic enough to appear as a real fight. (Kohler met the same fate playing the same role in the 1929 remake). I personally find the songs written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart first rate and beautiful to hear, which include "Row, Mississippi" (sung by Queenie Smith and the Five Cabin Kids); "Soon," "Down By the River" and "So Easy to Remember" (all sung by Crosby). Of all the songs, I'll vote "Easy to Remember" to be one of the best songs ever sung on screen by Crosby, who is really "Easy to Remember and Hard to Forget." Crosby sings that song with grace and charm that one can listen to over and over again. Crosby also gets to sing a Stephen Foster song with the Five Cabin Kids earlier in the story titled "Swanee River" in a sentimental and throaty manner.

Also in the cast are Jan Duggan (a familiar face in several Fields comedies), and Paul Hurst. Look fast for a young Ann Sheridan as one of the students in an all-girls school sequence with Bennett. Sheridan has a line or two in the story and its very recognizable. Miss Bennett's performance should not go unnoticed in which she starts off as the childish younger sister transformed to a mature woman whom Crosby continues to call "a little shrimp." "Mississppi" is enjoyable SHOW BOAT type musical rarely shown at all these days. For the benefit to those who feel it was never presented on cable television, American Movie Classics did premiere it on April 14, 1992 (along with a couple of other Fields comedies he did for Paramount), and was aired several times thereafter before ending its AMC run in early 1993. One can only hope "Mississippi" will get to see the light on the TV screen again someday. (***)


19 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 18 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed