Little Caesar

Watch Little Caesar

"The Power-Mad Monarch of the Murder Mobs!"
  • NR
  • 1931
  • 1 hr 19 min
  • 7.2  (14,395)

Released in 1931, Little Caesar is a classic gangster movie from the pre-Code era that stars Edward G. Robinson in one of his most iconic roles. Directed by Mervyn LeRoy, the film helped to cement the genre as a Hollywood staple and set the stage for future movies of its kind. The story follows the rise and fall of the titular character, Caesar Enrico "Rico" Bandello (Robinson), a small-time crook with big ambitions. Alongside his friend Joe Massara (Douglas Fairbanks Jr.), Rico starts off as a low-level thug in Chicago's underworld, but quickly climbs the ranks thanks to his ruthless nature and cunning intellect.

Despite his success, however, Rico struggles to reconcile his criminal activities with his personal relationships. He harbors a deep affection for dancer Olga Stassoff (Glenda Farrell), but their romance is complicated by their different lifestyles and priorities. Meanwhile, his mentor and boss, Sam Vettori (Stanley Fields), becomes increasingly suspicious of Rico's motives and starts to see him as a threat to his own power.

As Rico's empire grows, so does his arrogance, and he becomes increasingly reckless in his pursuit of wealth and status. His downfall comes when he overestimates his own abilities and makes a fatal mistake that leads to his ultimate defeat.

One of the most notable things about Little Caesar is its realistic portrayal of the criminal underworld. Unlike other gangster movies of the time, which tended to romanticize and glorify the lifestyle, Little Caesar presented it in a more sobering light. The violence, corruption, and moral ambiguity of the characters was not sugar-coated or glossed over, but rather presented in a raw and unflinching manner.

The film was also notable for Robinson's performance as Rico. Prior to Little Caesar, Robinson was a relatively unknown character actor, but his portrayal of Rico catapulted him to stardom and created a new archetype for gangster movies. Robinson's charisma and intensity made Rico a compelling and complex character, and his catchphrase, "Mother of mercy, is this the end of Rico?" became one of the most famous lines in movie history.

In addition to Robinson, the supporting cast of Little Caesar also delivered noteworthy performances. Fairbanks Jr. was a convincing foil to Robinson's character, displaying both loyalty and vulnerability in his role as Rico's best friend. Farrell was also memorable as Olga, bringing a sense of humor and levity to the otherwise dark subject matter.

Overall, Little Caesar is a classic of the gangster genre and a must-see for fans of classic Hollywood movies. Its impact can still be seen in crime movies to this day, and its themes of ambition, power, and morality continue to resonate with audiences.

Little Caesar is a 1931 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 19 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2.

Little Caesar
Where to Watch Little Caesar
Little Caesar is available to watch free on Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Little Caesar for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 19 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (14,395)