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Two Seconds (1932)

 -  Drama | Film-Noir  -  28 May 1932 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 436 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 4 critic

A condemned murderer, in the process of being executed, relives the events that led to his being sentenced to die in the electric chair.

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Title: Two Seconds (1932)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Vivienne Osborne ...
Guy Kibbee ...
Preston Foster ...
J. Carrol Naish ...
Tony (as J. Carroll Naish)
Frederick Burton ...
Judge
Harry Beresford ...
Doctor
Dorothea Wolbert ...
Lizzie, Cleaning Lady
Berton Churchill ...
The Warden
William Janney ...
College Boy at Execution
Edward McWade ...
The Prison Doctor
Gladys Lloyd ...
Woman
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Storyline

Allen claims he his being executed for the wrong murder. Flashbacks show him working with Clark as a riveter. When he makes a killing on the horses he meets Shirley and gets married. When Clark tells him Shirley is unfaithful they fight and Clark falls to his death. Later he finds that Clark was telling the truth. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In two seconds he became the slave of the woman he hated! Two blinding, flashing seconds that stripped him of honor and branded his soul!

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 May 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dois Segundos  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The premise behind this film was previously used in The Last Moment (1928). See more »

Quotes

College Boy at Execution: Look, Doctor, when that current's turned on, how long will it take before it's all over?
The Prison Doctor: You mean before I'll pronounce him dead?
College Boy at Execution: No, before he actually is dead. Will he pass out as soon as the current hits him?
The Prison Doctor: No.
Reporter: He won't? I thought it was all over just like that!
[He snaps his finger]
The Prison Doctor: Not with a powerful fellow like John Allen. His body will be paralyzed but his brain will continue to function for... maybe two seconds.
College Boy at Execution: Gee, those'll be the longest two seconds he ever lived!
The Prison Doctor: Long enough for ...
See more »

Soundtracks

Too Many Tears
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played when Shirley plays the radio
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Edward G shows us his range
25 January 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Here's a short but interesting pre-Code thriller about lonely riveter John Allen (Edward G Robinson) who lives with his pal Bud. John doesn't have much luck with the ladies; all his blind dates turn out to be duds. While escaping one particularly bad date, John ends up in a dance hall and meets the charming 10-cents-a-dance girl Shirley Day (Vivienne Osborne). She knows how to take care of herself (she slaps one groping guy, saying "you payed 10 cents for your feet, not your hands"), but when John helps her escape from another pesky patron she treats him like her knight in shining armor.

Well, a guy who looks like Edward G should know that the cutest girl in the room is not REALLY going to fall for him, but he takes the bait, and life goes downhill from there.

The film is told in an interesting fashion. It begins at the electric chair, and the events of the next hour are supposedly John Allen's flashbacks during the two seconds it takes to "fry."

Robinson does a nice job in the film, showing a lot of range from his usual swagger, to vulnerability, to sheer insanity. TWO SECONDS is fairly edgy in terms of content, coming two years before the Hays code cracked down on such things. It's worth a look to see Robinson doing something in the 30s besides playing gangsters.


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