The Fireball

  • 1950
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Sports

Roller derby was just getting started in the late 1940s, and Hollywood was quick to jump on the bandwagon. Johnny Casar (Mickey Rooney) escapes from an orphanage run by Father O'Hara (you guessed it, Pat O'Brien) and meets Mary Reeves (Beverly Tyler), a skater who helps him land a spot on a roller derby team. Johnny soon becomes a crowd favorite, attracting...read more

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Roller derby was just getting started in the late 1940s, and Hollywood was quick to jump on the bandwagon. Johnny Casar (Mickey Rooney) escapes from an orphanage run by Father O'Hara (you guessed it, Pat O'Brien) and meets Mary Reeves (Beverly Tyler), a skater who helps him land a spot on

a roller derby team. Johnny soon becomes a crowd favorite, attracting the attention of Polly (Marilyn Monroe), a sexy star chaser, but as his ego and selfishness grow, he alienates his teammates. Predictably, character-building tragedy strikes when Johnny is knocked for a loop by polio, but Mary

nurses him back to health and he returns to the track a new, considerably more generous man. Roller derby was later handled better in KANSAS CITY BOMBER (1972), but Rooney is a joy to watch and carries the film, challenging us to love him despite his bad attitude.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Roller derby was just getting started in the late 1940s, and Hollywood was quick to jump on the bandwagon. Johnny Casar (Mickey Rooney) escapes from an orphanage run by Father O'Hara (you guessed it, Pat O'Brien) and meets Mary Reeves (Beverly Tyler), a sk… (more)

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