Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

Lists: AFI 100 (2007), Drama

Brief Synopsis: "Naive and idealistic Jefferson Smith, leader of the Boy Rangers, is appointed on a lark by the spineless governor of his state. He is reunited with the state's senior senator--presidential hopeful and childhood hero, Senator Joseph Paine. In Washington, however, Smith discovers many of the shortcomings of the political process as his earnest goal of a national boys' camp leads to a conflict with the state political boss, Jim Taylor. Taylor first tries to corrupt Smith and then later attempts to destroy Smith through a scandal."

Overall Ranking: 297 (Rank from 1939: # 3)

Adjusted* Rating:
(lowest rating dropped)

Ratings Breakdown
(The Mixed Bag)

Buttery 83.33%
Regular 0%
Half-Popped 16.67%
Stale 0%
Burnt 0%


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Reviewer Rating Review Secondary Ratings
Lisa Marie Bowman100 - One of the greats.
(full review)
Coogs Film Blog97(full review)
Thomas Pollock90
3Guys Scotty85(full review)
Rob from GuysFilmQuest85
David Baruffi61

People Involved

  • Jean Arthur (Clarissa Saunders)
  • James Stewart (Jefferson Smith)
  • Claude Rains (Sen. Joseph Harrison Paine)
  • Edward Arnold (Jim Taylor)
  • Guy Kibbee (Gov. Hubert Happy Hopper)
  • Thomas Mitchell (Diz Moore)
  • Eugene Pallette (Chick McGann)
  • Beulah Bondi (Ma Smith)
  • Harry Carey (President of the Senate)
  • Ruth Donnelly (Emma Hopper)
  • Grant Mitchell (Sen. MacPherson)
  • Porter Hall (Sen. Monroe)
  • Pierre Watkin (Sen. Barnes)
  • Charles Lane (Nosey newsman)
  • William Demarest (Bill Griffith)
  • Dick Elliott (Carl Cook)
  • Billy Watson (Peter Hopper)
  • Delmar Watson (Jimmie Hopper)
  • Harry Watson (Hopper boy)
  • Garry Watson (Hopper boy)
  • Larry Simms (Hopper boy)
  • H.V. Kaltenborn (Himself)
  • H.B. Warner (Sen. Agnew)
  • Astrid Allwyn (Susan Paine)
  • John Russell (Otis Hopper)
  • Frank Capra (Director)