Hey! Hey! USA

Hey! Hey! USA is a 1938 British comedy film starring comedian Will Hay, Edgar Kennedy and Eddie Ryan.[1] Hay appears as Benjamin Twist, a porter who accidentally finds himself on a ship bound for the United States. The film features an early appearance by child actor Roddy McDowall, before he went to live in America.[2]

Hey! Hey! USA
Directed byMarcel Varnel
Produced byMichael Balcon
Written byJ.O.C. Orton
StarringWill Hay
Edgar Kennedy
Edmon Ryan
David Burns
Music byCharles Williams
CinematographyArthur Crabtree
Edited byR.E. Dearing
Distributed byGainsborough Pictures
Release date
  • October 1938 (1938-10)
Running time
80 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

Plot outline

Benjamin Twist, a teacher working during school holidays as a ship's porter ends up on a ship bound for America and impersonating a professor, Phineas Tavistock. Along with American gangster and stowaway Bugs Leary (Edgar Kennedy), Twist finds himself entangled in a plot to kidnap the son of a millionaire whom 'Professor' Tavistock is teaching. Things are further complicated by the fact that two sets of gangsters are attempting to get their hands on the ransom money, which Twist is given to hand over.


Critical reception

Sky Movies wrote, "incomparable Will Hay reprises his splendidly shifty Dr Benjamin Twist character (the incompetent headmaster of St Michael's) in this breezy British comedy set in a quaintly observed America full of gun-toting gangsters. Comic stalwart Edgar Kennedy provides slow-burning support under the direction of Marcel Varnel, the dapper Frenchman who made most of Hay's biggest successes. " [2]


  • Slide, Anthony. 'Banned in the USA': British Films in the United States and their Censorship, 1933-1960. I.B. Tauris & Co, 1998.


  1. "Hey! Hey! U.S.A.! | Bfi | Bfi". Explore.bfi.org.uk. Retrieved 26 February 2014.
  2. "Hey! Hey! USA - Sky Movies HD". Skymovies.sky.com. 23 May 2002. Archived from the original on 1 March 2014. Retrieved 25 February 2014.

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