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5.0 out of 5 stars
"Made it, Ma! Top of the World!", 27 April 2008
White Heat (1949) - Directed by Raoul Walsh.
Cagney plays Cody Jarrett, the madcap leader of a criminal gang who have just robbed a train. Cody is married to Verna, played by Virginia Mayo, however, throughout the story, Jarrett only seems concerned with the welfare of his dear, lawless mother, 'Ma' Jarrett , a role played by Margaret Wycherly. Cody also experiences regular, insufferable headaches which make his gang wary of him but at the same time see it as a weakness, and an oppurtunity to rise to the top of the chain. It is said that Jarrett's father died in a pschyiatric institution. The story consists of Cody's run from the law, an alibi and the eventual demise of him, his beloved mother and his gang.
The character of Cody Jarrett is likely to have been based on New York murderer Francis Crowley who, in 1931 at the age of 19, engaged in a severe firefight with the NYPD. When executed in 1932, his last words were; "Send my love to my Mother."
The movie was nominated for the 'Best Written Motion Picture Story' at the Oscars in 1950.