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The Glass Key (1942)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 23 October 1942 (USA)
A crooked politician finds himself being accused of murder by a gangster from whom he refused help during a re-election campaign.

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(screen play), (based on the novel by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Ralph Henry
Eddie Marr ...
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Clyde Matthews
George Meader ...
Claude Tuttle
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Jeep (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

During the campaign for reelection, the crooked politician Paul Madvig decides to clean up his past, refusing the support of the gangster Nick Varna and associating to the respectable reformist politician Ralph Henry. When Ralph's son, Taylor Henry, a gambler and the lover of Paul's sister Opal, is murdered, Paul's right arm, Ed Beaumont, finds his body on the street. Nick uses the financial situation of The Observer to force the publisher Clyde Matthews to use the newspaper to raise the suspicion that Paul Madvig might have killed Taylor. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Tougher They Are - The Harder They Fall


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 October 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der gläserne Schlüssel  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The title of this book and movie is most obscure; thankfully its meaning is described by Richard Layman in his book, Shadow Man: The life of Dashiell Hammett. A glass key symbolizes an act or experience which cannot be reversed or forgotten. It is a key made of glass which allows one entry to a room or a building but which shatters after one use. Skeleton keys were used for many years before and after this story to lock doors from both sides; hence, a skeleton key made of glass which breaks in a lock will prohibit the locking of a door and will prohibit one from leaving the room. Hence, once in the chamber one is subject to see one's choice through. See more »

Goofs

In Farr's office, when Ed is slowly tucking the anonymous letter in his inside pocket, Farr tells him he expects a visit from Nick. The camera is on Ed who abruptly takes his hand out of his inside pocket and turns to Farr, but then the camera cuts to show both him and Farr and he's still tucking the letter in his inside pocket. See more »

Quotes

Ed Beaumont: What'll we talk about?
Janet Henry: You.
[pause]
Janet Henry: Comfortable here?
Ed Beaumont: More or less.
Janet Henry: No fun?
Ed Beaumont: No fun.
Janet Henry: Hasn't your *nurse* been treating you well?
Ed Beaumont: Not as well as I'd like.
Janet Henry: Poor boy. If I'd known you were being neglected, I would have come sooner.
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Connections

Referenced in Hail, Caesar! (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

I Remember You
(uncredited)
from The Fleet's In (1942)
Music by Victor Schertzinger
Played as background music when Opal meets Taylor
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User Reviews

 
Excellent film noir
16 December 2004 | by See all my reviews

I actually saw The Blue Dahlia, another film noir starring Alan Ladd, Veronica Lake, and William Bendix, before I saw The Glass Key. While both films are memorable, especially for a fan of the genre like myself, I actually prefer this earlier collaboration. In The Glass Key, Ladd seems more engaged as does Lake. Ladd makes a great protagonist here; he is tough, smart, and determined, essentially the very essence of a self-made man. Lake is the perfect feminine companion for him! An engrossing plot, sharp dialogue, just the right dose of action, perfectly matched heroes and villains, and of course the chemistry between the leads make The Glass Key a classic film noir. See it today!


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