In another virtuoso performance, Cagney plays a backwoods peddler struggling to make a go of it in an unnamed state in the Deep South. He's appalled by the state's corrupt politicians who exploit the downtrodden sharecroppers, and, with his wife, Hale, at his side, begins a political
crusade. He scores his biggest victory when he exposes the crooked practices that are cheating cotton farmers at the scales, and with massive grassroots support is catapulted into a vicious, mud-slinging campaign for the governorship. Over the course of the campaign, the crusader Cagney quickly
becomes as selfish and corrupt as the people he condemns, his ambition overriding all his ot...