Cast & Crew
Businessman Nate Cohen joins his bootlegger friend, Captain Pat Kelly, on his boat after sixteen years on land. When Kelly's daughter Molly falls in love with Coast Guard officer Bob Graham, who has been hassling Kelly, he refuses to let them marry. In a bar, Kelly meets Queenie Truelove, to whom he was married for eight hours, and she demands $1,200 in alimony. To rid himself of Queenie and her gold-digging friend, Fern, Kelly convinces them his deck hand, Andy Anderson, is millionaire Commodore Van Deusen. When Fern grabs Cohen for a spontaneous double wedding, and Andy passes out from liquor, Kelly moves all to Captain Silva's rum boat, the "Esmeralda," saying it is a hospital boat for Andy. Kelly and Cohen then escape in Kelly's boat, and Kelly goes overboard and is forced to jump into a rowboat. A sea chase ensues in which they nearly crash numerous times, and Cohen ends up towing the rowboat before running out of gas. Meanwhile, Bob and Molly search for Kelly's boat, fearing he is adrift and in danger. Kelly and Cohen spy the "Esmeralda" and come aboard as Silva performs a wedding ceremony for Andy and Queenie, whom Andy thinks is wealthy. When Queenie discovers that Andy is really Kelly's deck hand, she chases Cohen and Kelly off Silva's boat and onto a frigate just as Bob approaches and fires at the rum boat. As the boat sinks, Cohen and Kelly surrender and come aboard Bob's boat. Bob then threatens to arrest Kelly for bootlegging until he agrees to let Bob marry Molly. Kelly accidentally fires a gun round, and the "Esmeralda" explodes, leaving Silva, Andy and Queenie swimming for their lives.
Ed Le Saint
Carl Laemmle Jr.
Although this film was not viewed, the above credits and plot summary were taken from a studio cutting continuity and dialogue script. This film marks George Stevens' first time as a feature director. Stevens had previously directed only short films. Jack Jungmeyer is credited as the third scenarist (after Austin and Guiol) in Motion Picture Herald and copyright records, and is credited with continuity in Daily Variety. Program notes for a modern screening of the film state that printed on the film's leader are the words: "This print May be used on both Movietone and Disc equipment." In the early thirties, exhibitors had a dual choice of sound systems: the older Vitaphone sound-on-disc system and RCA's Movietone sound-on-film system, which eventually replaced the disc system. This film was the last in a series of seven Cohens and Kellys films. For more information on the series, consult the Series Index and see the entry for The Cohens and Kellys in Africa (above).