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A shy milkman gets into boxing when he turns out to have a killer punch.
When Burleigh Sullivan, a failing Sunflower Dairies milkman, meets singer Polly Martin, he is overwhelmed by her beauty and offers to ask his sister Susie, a dancer at the 49 Club, to arrange a job for her. That night, Burleigh picks up Susie outside the club, only to find two men drunkenly accosting her. Susie runs for the police but cannot find any, and by the time she returns, both the men are knocked out, and Burleigh, still standing, recognizes them as Speed McFarlane, middleweight boxing champion of the world, and his coach, Spider Schultz. By the next morning the story is in all the newspapers, and Speed's manager, Gabby Sloane, is desperate to put an end to the bad publicity. When Burleigh is called to Gabby's hotel room, the manager is shocked to see his small stature, until Burleigh reveals that instead of knocking Speed out, he merely ducked a punch from Spider, which landed on Speed instead. As he demonstrates his story, Spider once again swings and accidentally hits Speed, who goes down just as reporters barge in and assume that Burleigh has triumphed again. To control the damaging press, Gabby decides to hire Burleigh as a professional boxer, planning for Speed to eventually beat him in the ring and regain his reputation. Meanwhile, Burleigh loses his job when he repeatedly calls his boss, Wilbur Austin, at five o'clock in the morning in an attempt to secure Polly a job. Later that day, Gabby visits Burleigh, and after hearing him talking to Polly on the phone, convinces Burleigh that Polly wants him to box. Soon, Burleigh begins to train at Gabby's camp under the name "Tiger Sullivan." A poor boxer, he finally learns some technique by dancing around the ring and ducking frequently. Gabby sells the gullible Burleigh an expensive engagement ring and lies that Polly has promised to marry him if he wins the championship against Speed. When Polly arrives, however, she accepts his proposal only if he will give up fighting, which he cannot because he now owes Gabby for the ring. During his first fight, Polly learns that it has been fixed and tries to subtly discourage him from continuing, but when he wins that night, Burleigh is flushed with success. He continues to fight, growing more arrogant with each subsequent win. Finally, before the championship fight, Austin backs Burleigh and Gabby stages a huge promotional push. After Burleigh embarrasses her at a party with his hammy showmanship, Polly returns his ring. Susie, meanwhile, overhears Gabby admitting that the fight is rigged for Speed to win. She confronts Speed, who loves her and offers to forfeit the fight, but Susie realizes that Burleigh needs to be humbled and tells Speed to go ahead. On the day of the fight, Burleigh arrives with his pet foal and accidentally knocks Speed out with the horse, after which Spider mistakenly gives Speed a sleeping potion. As the fight begins, Burleigh becomes terrified when Polly whispers to him that all the fights have been fixed, but Speed is so incapacitated by the medicine that Burleigh still manages to knock him out. As he is named middleweight champion of the world, Burleigh, who now knows he is a fake, accepts Austin's offer of a partnership in Sunflower Dairies. As his tale ends, Burleigh reveals that the whole story has been a promotional film made by Sunflower Dairies, and he is a manager training his employees, Gabby and Speed.
Cast & Crew
|MPAA Ratings:||Premiere Info:||not available|
|Release Date:||1946||Production Date:||
|Color/B&W:||Color (Technicolor)||Distributions Co:||RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.|
|Sound:||Mono (Western Electric Recording)||Production Co:||Samuel Goldwyn Productions, Inc., Trinity Productions, Inc.|
|Duration(mins):||114 or 116||Country:||United States|
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