Washington Merry-Go-Round (film)

Washington Merry-Go-Round
Directed by James Cruze
Produced by Walter Wanger
Screenplay by Jo Swerling
Story by Maxwell Anderson
Based on the book Washington Merry-Go-Round by Robert Sharon Allen & Drew Pearson
Starring Lee Tracy
Constance Cummings
Walter Connolly
Alan Dinehart
Cinematography Ira H. Morgan (as Ira Morgan)
Ted Tetzlaff
Edited by Richard Cahoon
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release dates
  • October 15, 1932 (1932-10-15)
Running time
79 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Washington Merry-Go-Round is a 1932 American Pre-Code film directed by James Cruze and produced by Walter Wanger.[1]


Button Gwinnett Brown (Lee Tracy) is a new congressman in the U.S. House of Representatives. He refuses bribes, vowing to rid Washington of corruption; but crosses swords with powerful senator Edward Norton (Alan Dinehart), who wants to enlist Brown to help Prohibition bootleggers. Norton also happens to be chasing elder senator Wylie's (Walter Connolly) daughter Alice (Constance Cummings), who Brown has also fallen for. In order to silence the idealistic newcomer, politicians stage a phony re-count and Brown loses his government seat. However, with the help of Senator Wylie and Alice, Brown manages to win back his place and clean up the halls of justice.


Critical reception

The New York Times wrote, ""Washington Merry-Go-Round" is a sturdy piece of work with melodramatic interludes. At times it is somewhat reckless in its dealings, but, allowing for its explosive utterances and its eagerness to win popular favor as an entertainment, it arouses a certain amount of interest. There are excellent performances by the cast, headed by the vehement Lee Tracy, and Mr. Cruze's direction is for the most part genuinely able";[2] while more recently Allmovie called it "a ridiculously contrived political tale that even in its time must have been viewed as overly simplistic";[3] whereas Leonard Maltin wrote that the film "remains surprisingly relevant today, with engaging performances and strong feel for the political arena, but peters out after great first half."[1]


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