Movie Details

German director Joe May was light-years removed from his glory days at UFA when he helmed the "Little Tough Guys" entry Hit the Road. This time, the youthful protagonists-Tom (Billy Halop), Pig (Huntz Hall), String (Gabe Dell) and Ape (Bernard Punsley)-are all the orphaned sons of gangsters who'd been murdered by mob boss Spike (Edward Pawley). "Graduating" from reform school, the boys show every sign of follwing in their parents' footseps, so they're paroled in the custody of kindhearted reformed gangster Jimmy Ryan (Barton MacLaine). Taking the kids to his cattle farm, Ryan gives them more than enough chores and responsiblities to keep them out of trouble, and before long the boys have cleaned up their act-but not without a bit of strong-arm persuasion from Ryan's tough-talking wife Molly (Gladys George). When Spike and his mob try to steal the $50,000 which the Ryans have saved to build a Boys' Town-like school for wayward youths, the Little Tough Guys rally to the defense of their benefactors, throwing punches and wisecracks with reckless abandon. The most pleasant aspect of Hit the Road is the presence of charming leading lady Evelyn Ankers (who later recalled having to fend off the amorous advances of teenaged Huntz Hall by deploying a well-aimed knee!); the least pleasant is the lachrymose performance of child actor Bobs Watson, who never spoke when crying would do. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi