Best Action Movies of 1940


The Mark of Zorro

7.5/10 IMDB

Around 1820 the son of a California nobleman comes home from Spain to find his native land under a villainous dictatorship. On the one hand he plays the useless fop, while on the other he is the masked avenger Zorro.

Starring: Tyrone Power, Linda Darnell, Basil Rathbone, Gale Sondergaard, Eugene Pallette, J. Edward Bromberg, Montagu Love, Janet Beecher, George Regas, Gino Corrado ..
Directed by: Rouben Mamoulian
Release date: 1940-11-08

The Thief of Bagdad

7.4/10 IMDB

When Prince Ahmad is blinded and cast out of Bagdad by the nefarious Jaffar, he joins forces with the scrappy thief Abu to win back his royal place, as well as the heart of a beautiful princess.

Starring: Conrad Veidt, Sabu, June Duprez, Rex Ingram, John Justin, Miles Malleson, Morton Selten, Mary Morris, Hay Petrie, Adelaide Hall ..
Directed by: Ludwig Berger, Michael Powell, Tim Whelan
Release date: 1940-12-25

Foreign Correspondent

7.5/10 IMDB

The European war was only beginning to erupt across national borders. Johnny Jones, an American crime reporter dispatched by his New York publisher to put a fresh spin on the drowsy dispatches emanating from overseas, has a nose for a good story—which promptly leads him to the crime of fascism and Nazi Germany's designs on European conquest. In attempting to learn more about a seemingly noble peace effort, Jones walks into the middle of an assassination, uncovers a spy ring and—not entirely coincidentally—falls in love.

Starring: Joel McCrea, Laraine Day, Herbert Marshall, George Sanders, Albert Bassermann, Robert Benchley, Edmund Gwenn, Eduardo Ciannelli, Harry Davenport, Martin Kosleck ..
Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock
Release date: 1940-08-16

The Sea Hawk

7.6/10 IMDB

Dashing pirate Geoffrey Thorpe plunders Spanish ships for Queen Elizabeth I and falls in love with Dona Maria, a beautiful Spanish royal he captures.

Starring: Errol Flynn, Brenda Marshall, Claude Rains, Donald Crisp, Flora Robson, Alan Hale, Henry Daniell, Una O'Connor, James Stephenson, Gilbert Roland ..
Directed by: Michael Curtiz
Release date: 1940-08-10

The Return of Frank James

6.6/10 IMDB

Farmer Frank and his ward hunt brother Jesse's killers, the back-shooting Fords.

Starring: Henry Fonda, Gene Tierney, Jackie Cooper, Henry Hull, John Carradine, J. Edward Bromberg, Donald Meek, Eddie Collins, George Barbier, Russell Hicks ..
Directed by: Fritz Lang
Release date: 1940-08-10

The Westerner

7.3/10 IMDB

Drifter Cole Harden is accused of stealing a horse and faces hanging by self-appointed Judge Roy Bean, but Harden manages to talk his way out of it by claiming to be a friend of stage star Lillie Langtry, with whom the judge is obsessed, even though he has never met her. Tensions rise when Harden comes to the defense of a group of struggling homesteaders who Judge Bean is trying to drive away.

Starring: Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Doris Davenport, Fred Stone, Forrest Tucker, Paul Hurst, Chill Wills, Lilian Bond, Dana Andrews, Charles Halton ..
Directed by: William Wyler
Release date: 1940-09-18

Brother Orchid

7.0/10 IMDB

When retired racket boss John Sarto tries to reclaim his place and former friends try to kill him, he finds solace in a monastery and reinvents himself as a pious monk.

Starring: Edward G. Robinson, Ann Sothern, Humphrey Bogart, Donald Crisp, Ralph Bellamy, Allen Jenkins, Charles D. Brown, Cecil Kellaway, Morgan Conway, Richard Lane ..
Directed by: Lloyd Bacon
Release date: 1940-06-07
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Long Voyage Home

The Long Voyage Home

6.9/10 IMDB

The crew of the merchant ship Glencairn hope to survive a transatlantic crossing during World War II. Adapted from four Eugene O'Neill one-act plays.

Starring: John Wayne, Thomas Mitchell, Ian Hunter, Barry Fitzgerald, Wilfrid Lawson, John Qualen, Mildred Natwick, Ward Bond, Arthur Shields, Joe Sawyer ..
Directed by: John Ford
Release date: 1940-11-16

Virginia City

6.8/10 IMDB

Union officer Kerry Bradford escapes from a Confederate prison and races to intercept $5 million in gold destined for Confederate coffers. A Confederate sympathizer and a Mexican bandit, each with their own stake in the loot, stand in his way.

Starring: Errol Flynn, Miriam Hopkins, Randolph Scott, Humphrey Bogart, Frank McHugh, Alan Hale, Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams, John Litel, Douglass Dumbrille, Moroni Olsen ..
Directed by: Michael Curtiz
Release date: 1940-03-23

Torrid Zone

6.7/10 IMDB

A Central American plantation manager and his boss battle over a traveling showgirl.

Starring: James Cagney, Ann Sheridan, Pat O’Brien, Andy Devine, Helen Vinson, Jerome Cowan, George Tobias, George Reeves, Victor Kilian, Frank Puglia ..
Directed by: William Keighley
Release date: 1940-05-18

Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe

6.7/10 IMDB

A mysterious plague, the Purple Death, ravages the earth. Dr. Zarkov, investigating in his spaceship, finds a ship from planet Mongo seeding the atmosphere with dust. Sure enough, Ming the Merciless is up to his old tricks. So it's back to Mongo for Flash, Dale, and Zarkov, this time with ready-made allies waiting: Prince Barin of Arboria and Queen Fria of the frozen northern land of Frigia; where, it so happens, is found polarite, antidote to the plague. But Ming will use all his forces to keep our heroes from thwarting his plans of conquest.

Starring: Buster Crabbe, Carol Hughes, Frank Shannon, Charles Middleton, Donald Curtis, Lee Powell, Shirley Deane, Roland Drew, Don Rowan, Victor Zimmerman ..
Directed by: Ford Beebe, Ray Taylor
Release date: 1940-04-09

The Fighting 69th

6.6/10 IMDB

Although loudmouthed braggart Jerry Plunkett alienates his comrades and officers, Father Duffy, the regimental chaplain, has faith that he'll prove himself in the end.

Starring: James Cagney, Pat O’Brien, George Brent, Jeffrey Lynn, Alan Hale, Frank McHugh, Dennis Morgan, Dick Foran, William Lundigan, Guinn "Big Boy" Williams ..
Directed by: William Keighley
Release date: 1940-01-27

British Intelligence

6.1/10 IMDB

During WWI pretty German master spy Helene von Lorbeer is sent undercover to London to live with the family of a high-placed British official where she is to rendezvous with the butler Valdar, also a spy, and help him transmit secret war plans back to Germany.

Starring: Boris Karloff, Margaret Lindsay, Bruce Lester, Leonard Mudie, Holmes Herbert, Austin Fairman, William Bailey, Louise Brien, Glen Cavender, David Cavendish ..
Directed by: Terry O. Morse
Release date: 1940-01-29

Santa Fe Trail

6.2/10 IMDB

As a penalty for fighting fellow classmates days before graduating from West Point, J.E.B. Stuart, George Armstrong Custer and four friends are assigned to the 2nd Cavalry, stationed at Fort Leavenworth. While there they aid in the capture and execution of the abolitionist, John Brown following the Battle of Harper's Ferry.

Starring: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Alan Hale, Ronald Reagan, John Litel, Van Heflin, Raymond Massey, Gene Reynolds, William Lundigan, Alan Baxter ..
Directed by: Michael Curtiz
Release date: 1940-12-20

One Million B.C.

5.7/10 IMDB

One Million B.C. is a 1940 American fantasy film produced by Hal Roach Studios and released by United Artists. It is also known by the titles Cave Man, Man and His Mate, and Tumak. The film stars Victor Mature as protagonist Tumak, a young cave man who strives to unite the uncivilized Rock Tribe and the peaceful Shell Tribe, Carole Landis as Loana, daughter of the Shell Tribe chief and Tumak's love interest, and Lon Chaney, Jr. as Tumak's stern father and leader of the Rock Tribe.

Starring: Victor Mature, Carole Landis, Lon Chaney Jr., John Hubbard, Mamo Clark, Inez Palange, Edgar Edwards, Nigel De Brulier, Conrad Nagel, Jacqueline Dalya ..
Directed by: Hal Roach, Hal Roach, Jr.
Release date: 1940-04-05
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Shadow

The Shadow

6.7/10 IMDB

The Shadow battles a villain known as The Black Tiger, who has the power to make himself invisible and is trying to take over the world with his death ray.

Starring: Victor Jory, Veda Ann Borg, Roger Moore, Robert Fiske, John Paul Jones, Chuck Hamilton, Edward Peil Sr., Frank LaRue, Philip Ahn, Griff Barnett ..
Directed by: James W. Horne
Release date: 1940-01-05
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Lady in Question

The Lady in Question

6.3/10 IMDB

When a jury member takes in the defendant he couldn't convict, she has a bad influence on his son.

Starring: Brian Aherne, Rita Hayworth, Glenn Ford, Irene Rich, George Coulouris, Lloyd Corrigan, Evelyn Keyes, Edward Norris, Curt Bois, Frank Reicher ..
Directed by: Charles Vidor
Release date: 1940-08-07

The Green Archer

6.5/10 IMDB

Columbia's 12th serial of 57 total (following 1940's "Deadwood Dick" and ahead of 1941's "White Eagle") is another of director's James Horne's "classics" where he evidently figured that the same reactions that served him well in Laurel and Hardy films would work well in action serials where he has all hands, heroes and villains alike, doing some kind of over-the top "take", no matter the situation. This loose adaptation of an Edgar Wallace story finds Michael Bellamy (Kenne Duncan in his Kenneth Duncan period) inheriting Garr Castle, but his brother, Abel Bellamy (James Craven, as usual making Oil-Can Harry look smooth), has him imprisoned unjustly and moves into the castle himself. When Michael's wife, Elaine Bellamy (Dorothy Fay), fails to return after visiting Abel, her sister Valerie Howett (Iris Meredith), accompanied by their father,

Starring: Victor Jory, Iris Meredith, James Craven, Robert Fiske, Dorothy Fay, Forrest Taylor, Jack Ingram, Joseph W. Girard, Kit Guard, Fred Kelsey ..
Directed by: James W. Horne
Release date: 1940-10-25
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Border Legion

The Border Legion

6.1/10 IMDB

Wanted by the law in New York, Dr. Steve Kells heads west and arrives in an area controlled by an outlaw gang known as the Border Legion. When the gang's boss is wounded, they kidnap Kells and force him to remove the bullet. Not allowed to leave and being a wanted man, he joins the gang. Now wanted as a gang member also, he nevertheless plans a raid that will lead the entire gang into a trap.

Starring: Roy Rogers, George 'Gabby' Hayes, Carol Hughes, Joe Sawyer, Maude Eburne, Jay Novello, Hal Taliaferro, Paul Porcasi, Robert Emmett Keane, Dick Wessel ..
Directed by: Joseph Kane
Release date: 1940-12-05
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Drums of Fu Manchu

Drums of Fu Manchu

6.9/10 IMDB

The nefarious Dr. Fu Manchu searches for the keys to the tomb of Genghis Khan, in order to fulfill a prophecy that will enable him to conquer the world. His nemesi, Dr. Nayland Smith and his associates fight to keep the evil doctor from getting his hands on the keys. In 1943 the serial was edited together into a feature movie also called Drums of Fu Manchu.

Starring: Henry Brandon, William Royle, Robert Kellard, Luana Walters, Olaf Hytten, Tom Chatterton, Gloria Franklin, John Merton, George Cleveland, John Dilson ..
Directed by: John English, William Witney
Release date: 1940-03-15
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Green Hornet Strikes Again!

The Green Hornet Strikes Again!

6.6/10 IMDB

Second serial featuring The Green Hornet and Kato.

Starring: Warren Hull, Wade Boteler, Anne Nagel, Keye Luke, Eddie Acuff, Pierre Watkin, James Seay, Arthur Loft, Joe Devlin, William Hall ..
Directed by: Ford Beebe, John Rawlins
Release date: 1940-12-24
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Adventures of Red Ryder

Adventures of Red Ryder

7.3/10 IMDB

Calvin Drake employs a group of low-lifes to drive away land owners along the path of a new railroad; Red Ryder opposes this strategy.

Starring: Don Barry, Noah Beery, Tommy Cook, Maude Allen, Vivian Austin, Harry Worth, Hal Taliaferro, William Farnum, Bob Kortman, Carleton Young ..
Directed by: John English, William Witney
Release date: 1940-06-28
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Pride of the Bowery

Pride of the Bowery

5.9/10 IMDB

Muggs is tricked into entering a Civilian Conservation Corps camp by Danny in order to get in shape. Muggs resists and battles with the camp captain and with other campers. He also becomes involved in trying to help one of his friends get out of trouble.

Starring: Leo Gorcey, Bobby Jordan, Kenneth Howell, Mary Ainslee, Bobby Stone, Donald Haines, David Gorcey, Sunshine Sammy Morrison, Kenneth Harlan, Nick Stuart ..
Directed by: Joseph H. Lewis
Release date: 1940-12-15

The Son of Monte Cristo

6.2/10 IMDB

Rightful owner of the kingdom, the Duchess of Zona, is engaged in a power struggle with the evil General Gurko. Edmond, the son of Monte Cristo, dons many disguises to come to the aid of the Duchess.

Starring: Louis Hayward, Joan Bennett, George Sanders, Florence Bates, Lionel Royce, Montagu Love, Ian Wolfe, Clayton Moore, Ralph Byrd, Georges Renavent ..
Directed by: Rowland V. Lee
Release date: 1940-12-05
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Junior G-Men

Junior G-Men

6.4/10 IMDB

A gang of urban street kids and a club of suburban would-be federal agents, at first rivals, join forces to rescue the father of one of the kids, the inventor of a super-explosive and its remote detonator, from the clutches of a band of foreign subversives call the "Flaming Torch Gang". A 12-episode movie serial with the chapters: •1. Enemies Within •2. The Blast of Doom •3. Human Dynamite •4. Blazing Danger •5. Trapped By Traitors •6. Traitors' Treachery •7. Flaming Death •8. Hurled Through Space •9. The Plunge of Peril •10.The Toll of Treason •11.Descending Doom •12.The Power of Patriotism

Starring: Billy Halop, Huntz Hall, Kenneth Howell, Phillip Terry, Cy Kendall, Gabriel Dell, Bernard Punsly, Ken Lundy, Ben Taggart, Russell Hicks ..
Directed by: Ford Beebe, John Rawlins
Release date: 1940-11-01
Best Action Movies of 1940 : River's End

River's End

5.9/10 IMDB

An escaped criminal pretends to be a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in order to prove his innocence of murder. Star Dennis Morgan plays two roles.

Starring: Dennis Morgan, Elizabeth Inglis, George Tobias, Victor Jory, James Stephenson, Steffi Duna, John Ridgely, Frank Wilcox, Edward Pawley, David Bruce ..
Directed by: Ray Enright
Release date: 1940-08-10
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Carson City Kid

The Carson City Kid

6.0/10 IMDB

The Carson City Kid and partner Laramie are outlaws. When his partner is caught the Kid, his identity being unknown, takes a job in Jessup's saloon. Here he see Jessup cheat Waren out of his money. Warren then robs Jessup posing as the Kid but gets caught. To gain his freedom, Laramie identifies Warren as the Kid. Realizing Jessup is the man that killed his brother, the Kid must find a way to clear Warren and get Jessup.

Starring: Roy Rogers, George 'Gabby' Hayes, Bob Steele, Noah Beery Jr., Pauline Moore, Francis McDonald, Hal Taliaferro, Arthur Loft, George Rosener, Chester Gan ..
Directed by: Joseph Kane
Release date: 1940-07-01
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Colorado


5.9/10 IMDB

Trouble in Colorado is tying up Union troops needed back east during the Civil War and Lieut. Burke is sent to investigate. Macklin and his gang are causing the problems and Capt. Mason joins them. When Burke catches up with them he also finds Mason, his brother.

Starring: Roy Rogers, George 'Gabby' Hayes, Pauline Moore, Milburn Stone, Maude Eburne, Arthur Loft, Hal Taliaferro, Vester Pegg, Fred Burns, Lloyd Ingraham ..
Directed by: Joseph Kane
Release date: 1940-09-15
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Mysterious Doctor Satan

Mysterious Doctor Satan

7.4/10 IMDB

A mad scientist named Dr. Satan plots to steal key pieces of technology to enable him to build an army of robots based on his prototype to conquer America. The only one standing in his way is Bob Wayne, who fights Satan as the enigmatic Copperhead. Mysterious Doctor Satan is a 1940 film serial named after its chief villain. Doctor Satan's main opponent is the masked mystery man, "The Copperhead", whose secret identity is Bob Wayne, a man searching for justice and revenge on Satan for the death of his step-father. The serial charts the conflict between the two as Bob Wayne pursues Doctor Satan, while the latter completes his plans for world domination.

Starring: Eduardo Ciannelli, Robert Wilcox, William Newell, C. Montague Shaw, Ella Neal, Dorothy Herbert, Charles Trowbridge, Jack Mulhall, Edwin Stanley, Walter McGrail ..
Directed by: John English, William Witney
Release date: 1940-12-13
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Three Faces West

Three Faces West

6.1/10 IMDB

Viennese surgeon Dr. Braun and his daughter Leni come to a small town in North Dakota as refugees from Hitler. When the winds of the Dust Bowl threaten the town, John Phillips leads the townsfolk in moving to greener pastures in Oregon. He falls for Leni, but she is betrothed to the man who helped her and her father escape from the Third Reich. She must decide between the two men.

Starring: John Wayne, Sigrid Gurie, Charles Coburn, Spencer Charters, Helen MacKellar, Roland Varno, Sonny Bupp, Wade Boteler, Trevor Bardette, Russell Simpson ..
Directed by: Bernard Vorhaus
Release date: 1940-07-03

Neutral Port

5.3/10 IMDB

A British merchant ship is torpedoed by a German U-Boat and takes shelter in a neutral port. The Captain then strikes back at the German enemy.

Starring: Will Fyffe, Leslie Banks, Yvonne Arnaud, Phyllis Calvert, Hugh McDermott, John Salew, Cameron Hall, Frederick Valk, Anthony Holles, Sigurd Lohde ..
Directed by: Marcel Varnel
Release date: 1940-12-06
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Gang War

Gang War

5.2/10 IMDB

Two mobs fight for control of the jukebox racket.

Starring: Ralph Cooper, Gladys Snyder, Reginald Fenderson, Laurence Criner, Monte Hawley, Jess Lee Brooks, Johnny Thomas, Maceo Bruce Sheffield, Charles Hawkins, Bobby Johnson ..
Directed by: Leo C. Popkin
Release date: 1940-03-28
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Marked Men

Marked Men

5.4/10 IMDB

A man accused of planning a prison break turns the tables on escaped cons by leading the group into the desert.

Starring: Warren Hull, Isabel Jewell, John Dilson, Paul Bryar, Charles Williams, Lyle Clement, Budd Buster, Al St. John, Eddie Fetherston, Ted Erwin ..
Directed by: Sam Newfield
Release date: 1940-09-30
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Marines Fly High

The Marines Fly High

5.4/10 IMDB

Marine lieutenants Dan and Jim fight bandits in the South American jungle, while competing for the attention of beautiful Joan Grant.

Starring: Richard Dix, Lucille Ball, Chester Morris, Steffi Duna, John Eldredge, Paul Harvey, Horace McMahon, Dick Hogan, Kirby Grant, Ann Shoemaker ..
Directed by: Benjamin Stoloff, George Nichols Jr.
Release date: 1940-03-04
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Sky Bandits

Sky Bandits

5.3/10 IMDB

Sgt. Renfrew and Constable Kelly go aloft to search for a plane missing with a shipment of gold from the Yukon Mine Company. Inventor Speavy has devised a power ray which disrupts electrical impulses, and Morgan and his gang of crooks has brought in Prof. Lewis to increase the ray's range, telling him he's helping the government develop this new weapon. Speavy spills the beans to Prof. Lewis and his daughter Madeleine,and Morgan threatens to implicate them in his crimes unless they cooperate. Morgan kills Speavy when he tries to warn Renfrew, but when Madeleine stows away on board the doomed plane Renfrew is piloting, will the crooks be able to make Prof. Lewis use the power ray to bring the plane down?

Starring: James Newill, Louise Stanley, Dewey Robinson, William Pawley, Joe De Stefani, Jim Farley, Dave O'Brien, Karl Hackett, Ted Adams, Dwight Frye ..
Directed by: Ralph Staub
Release date: 1940-07-06
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Last Alarm

The Last Alarm

5.7/10 IMDB

A recently retired fire captain suffers from boredom, until one of his friends is killed battling an arson fire. It becomes his purpose in life to track down the arsonist. As he gets closer to finding the killer, things become dangerous for him and his family.

Starring: J. Farrell MacDonald, Warren Hull, Polly Ann Young, Mary Gordon, George Pembroke, Joel Friedkin, Bruce MacFarlane, Eddie Hart, Willard Hall, Charles Anthony Hughes ..
Directed by: William West
Release date: 1940-06-25
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Murder in the Air

Murder in the Air

5.4/10 IMDB

Enemy agents are everywhere and they are sabotaging all important war deliveries. The body of a hobo found in a train wreck had a money belt with $50,000 and a tattoo of a circle and arrow. This is a tattoo for saboteurs for hire and Brass must impersonate the dead man to find out what his orders are. As Steve Coe, he meets with the band of enemy agents in California and everything goes well until the wife of the dead 'Hobo' shows up. Luckily, Gabby is able to save Brass and Brass learns what is his assignment. He is to board the USN airship 'Mason', which is testing the super secret Inertia Projector, and destroy the airship.

Starring: Ronald Reagan, Eddie Foy Jr., John Litel, Lya Lys, Frank Wilcox, James Stephenson, Julie Stevens, Helen Lynd, Robert Warwick, Victor Zimmerman ..
Directed by: Lewis Seiler
Release date: 1940-06-01
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Young Bill Hickok

Young Bill Hickok

5.6/10 IMDB

Bill Hickok, assisted by Calamity Jane, is after a foreign agent and his guerrilla band who are trying to take over some western territory just as the Civil War is coming to a close.

Starring: Roy Rogers, George 'Gabby' Hayes, Julie Bishop, Monte Blue, Sally Payne, John Miljan, Archie Twitchell, Hal Taliaferro, Ethel Wales, Jack Ingram ..
Directed by: Joseph Kane
Release date: 1940-10-21
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Captain Caution

Captain Caution

5.4/10 IMDB

When her father dies, a young girl helps a young man take command of the ship to fight the British during the war of 1812.

Starring: Victor Mature, Louise Platt, Leo Carrillo, Bruce Cabot, Robert Barrat, Vivienne Osborne, Alan Ladd, Miles Mander, El Brendel, Roscoe Ates ..
Directed by: Richard Wallace
Release date: 1940-08-09
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Midnight Limited

Midnight Limited

5.0/10 IMDB

The Phantom Robber gets a fortune in jewels and some valuable papers from a robbery on the crack train "The Midnight Limited" and Val Lennon and his pretty assistant, Joan Marshall, are on his trail. But the Phantom strikes three more times and adds murder to his list. Val decides to use himself as bait, although Chief Harrigan and Joan beg him not to risk his life. But Val, disguised as a wealthy Canadian, boards the train for a rendezvous with a killer.

Starring: John 'Dusty' King, Marjorie Reynolds, George Cleveland, Edward Keane, Monte Collins, I. Stanford Jolley, Pat Flaherty, Herbert Ashley, Lita Chevret, Ray Bennett ..
Directed by: Howard Bretherton
Release date: 1940-03-20
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Men with Steel Faces

Men with Steel Faces

4.5/10 IMDB

Re-edited feature version of serial The Phantom Empire (1935). Singer Gene Autry discovers a race of advanced humans living beneath the earth.

Starring: Gene Autry, Frankie Darro, Smiley Burnette, Betsy King Ross, Dorothy Christy, Wheeler Oakman, Charles K. French, Warner Richmond, J. Frank Glendon, Edward Peil Sr. ..
Directed by: B. Reeves Eason, Otto Brower
Release date: 1940-05-02
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Yukon Flight

Yukon Flight

5.0/10 IMDB

When the plane owned by the "Yukon and Columbia Mail Service" crashes, RCMP Sergeant Renfrew (James Newill) and Constable Kelly (Dave O'Brien) suspect murder. Their suspicions are confirmed when Renfrew finds the control stick has been jammed, forcing the plane to fly in one direction until the gas ran out. Mine owner Louise Howard (Louise Stanley) reports that her superintendent is missing. The Mounties find him murdered and that too has been made to look like an accident. A new mail service pilot, Bill Shipley (Warren Hull), arrives. He had gone to training school with Renfrew but had been cashiered for misconduct. The Mounties discover that Raymond (Karl Hackett), who had been working for Louise, really owns the flying line managed by Yuke Cardoe (William Pawley.) They find proof that all the gold from the mine isn't being turned over to Louise, and suspect that Raymond and Yuke are stealing the gold and shipping it to Seattle by plane.

Starring: James Newill, Louise Stanley, Warren Hull, William Pawley, Dave O'Brien, George Humbert, Karl Hackett, Jack Rube Clifford, Roy Barcroft, Bob Terry ..
Directed by: Ralph Staub
Release date: 1940-01-02
Best Action Movies of 1940 : King of the Royal Mounted

King of the Royal Mounted

7.5/10 IMDB

The Canadians have discovered a valuable substance called Compound X, which can cure infantile paralysis. When a country at war with Canada learns that Compound X also contains magnetic properties that could aid them in their warfare against the British, they send agents to infiltrate Canada and steal a large quantity of the substance. It's up to Sgt. King (Allan Lane) and his Mounties to track down the agents and put an end to their scheme.

Starring: Allan Lane, Robert Strange, Robert Kellard, Lita Conway, Herbert Rawlinson, Harry Cording, Bryant Washburn, Budd Buster, Stanley Andrews, John Davidson ..
Directed by: John English, William Witney
Release date: 1940-09-19

Spills for Thrills

7.1/10 IMDB

Warner Bros. short about stuntmen and stuntwomen and how they do their work, featuring real-life stunt artists Harvey Parry, Mary Wiggins, and Allen Pomeroy.

Starring: Harvey Parry, Mary Wiggins, Allen Pomeroy, Knox Manning, John Ridgely ..
Directed by: De Leon Anthony
Release date: 1940-01-07
Best Action Movies of 1940 : The Wildcat of Tucson

The Wildcat of Tucson

6.3/10 IMDB

When his brother Dave is put in jail, Bill Hickok returns to help him. Dave has been charged with attempted murder when the other man drew first. Judge Barlow put him there and Bill gets the Judge to confess. Bill learns that Rance McKee is behind all the trouble and he forces the Judge into the decisions he wants. So Bill heads out by himself to face McKee in the showdown.

Starring: Bill Elliott, Dub Taylor, Evelyn Young, Stanley Brown, Kenneth MacDonald, Ben Taggart, Edmund Cobb, George Lloyd, Sammy Stein, Dorothy Andre ..
Directed by: Lambert Hillyer
Release date: 1940-12-31
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Winners of the West

Winners of the West

6.3/10 IMDB

Beyond Hell's Gate Pass is territory controlled by a man who calls himself King Carter; he uses a variety of schemes to prevent the railroad from being built, for fear it will finish his control of (what he considers) his land.

Starring: Dick Foran, Anne Nagel, Harry Woods, Tom Fadden, James Craig, Charles Stevens, Edward Keane, Trevor Bardette, Edgar Edwards, Edmund Cobb ..
Directed by: Ford Beebe, Ray Taylor
Release date: 1940-07-02
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Emergency Squad

Emergency Squad

5.8/10 IMDB

Betty Bryant is an ambitious newspaper reporter in love with Dan Barton, a member of a big-city Emergency Squad who are trained to deal with riots, cave-in, explosions, fires and other emergencies where lives are at stake. Slade Wiley, an unscrupulous tunnel builder, finds that his low bid on the Newford Tunnel project is causing him to lose a lot of money, and has underworld leader Nick Burton set off blasts to frighten the stockholders into selling their shares at a low price so he can buy up the stock. Betty is investigating the deal when Wiley and Burton take her on a "tour trip" to the tunnel.

Starring: William Henry, Louise Campbell, Richard Denning, Robert Paige, Anthony Quinn, John Miljan, John Marston, Joseph Crehan, Sam Ash, Barbara Barondess ..
Directed by: Edward Dmytryk
Release date: 1940-01-05

Shooting High

5.7/10 IMDB

A movie company making a film about a famous sheriff hires his grandson as a stand-in for the lead.

Starring: Jane Withers, Gene Autry, Marjorie Weaver, Frank M. Thomas, Robert Lowery, Jack Carson, Kay Aldridge, Hobart Cavanaugh, Charles Middleton, Tom London ..
Directed by: Alfred E. Green
Release date: 1940-04-25
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Terry and the Pirates

Terry and the Pirates

5.8/10 IMDB

Dr. Herbert Lee, an archaeologist seeking to decipher ancient Mara inscriptions, is aided by his son Terry, Terry's pal Pat Ryan, and Normandie Drake. Jungle pirate and warlord Fang (Dick Curtis) plots to kill The Dragon Lady, Queen of the Temple of Mara, and seize the treasures of her ancestors. Both Fang and The Dragon Lady have sworn death for any foreign intruders.

Starring: William Tracy, Jeff York, Joyce Bryant, Joyce Bryant, Victor DeCamp, Sheila Darcy, Dick Curtis, John Paul Jones, Forrest Taylor, Jack Ingram ..
Directed by: James W. Horne
Release date: 1940-04-12
Best Action Movies of 1940 : Passport to Alcatraz

Passport to Alcatraz

5.8/10 IMDB

George Hollister, crack investigator for the NYC police, is assigned to run down the enemy aliens who dynamited a Detroit munitions plant. The trail takes him to a customs inspector who is known to have honored fake passports provided by Leon Fenten, chief henchman of Drexel Stuyvesant who heads the sabotage ring. Aided by his partner Ray Nolan. Hollister arrests an agent named Reed and takes his place using the fake passport. As Reed, he is met by Karol Roy, an innocent assistant, who takes him to Fenten. Working undercover, Hollister is still unable to learn the name of the head man, not even from dumb gang-member Hank Kircher. Stuyvesant warns Fenten of his suspicions about "Reed" and the latter gives Hollister an assignment as a test.

Starring: Jack Holt, Noah Beery Jr., Cecilia Callejo, Maxie Rosenbloom, C. Henry Gordon, Guy Usher, Clay Clement, Ivan Lebedeff, Ben Welden, Robert Fiske ..
Directed by: Lewis D. Collins
Release date: 1940-06-06

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