The Public Enemy
(1931, William Wellman)
The movie that made James Cagney a star. His dynamic performance makes up for the cookie-cutter characters left over in this film–only Leslie Fenton in a small role as “Nails” Nathan can compete with Cagney’s chops. I’m guessing if any other actor tried, they got breakfast squashed in their face (see above).
Violent and sexually suggestive for its time. The Hays Code was in effect, but skirted by this film.
(Coincidentally, this is also the same rating for Public Enemy’s album Fear of a Black Planet. What’dya know.)