G Men is a 1935 Warner Bros. crime film starring James Cagney, Ann Dvorak, and Margaret Lindsay, and presenting Lloyd Nolan’s film debut. According to Variety Magazine, the movie was one of the top-grossing films of 1935. The supporting cast features Robert Armstrong and Barton MacLane.
G Men was made as part of a deliberate attempt to counteract what many conservative political and business leaders claimed was a disturbing trend of glorifying criminals in the early 1930s gangster film genre. Although the gangster films were typically presented as moral indictments of organized crime where the criminal protagonist inevitably died, they nevertheless depicted a life of freedom, power and luxury enjoyed by gangsters in the midst of a real-life economic crisis. Foremost of these films were Little Caesar, the original Scarface, and perhaps the most memorable, The Public Enemy, which catapulted Cagney to stardom. Also notable about these films was that law enforcement was typically portrayed as either impotent in the face of crime, or, as with Public Enemy, akin to a derelict and largely absentee father shirking his duty. Based on this interpretation, G Men supplanted the criminal protagonist with the heroic federal police officer.