Desperate (1947)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Film-Noir, Thriller  |  9 May 1947 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 1,306 users  
Reviews: 42 user | 21 critic

A young married couple flee both police and a gangster out for revenge.



(screenplay), (additional dialogue), 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Steve Brodie ...
Audrey Long ...
Walt Radak
Pete Lavitch - Private Eye
William Challee ...
Jason Robards Sr. ...
Det. Lt. Louie Ferrari (as Jason Robards)
Freddie Steele ...
Shorty Abbott
Lee Frederick ...
Joe Daly
Paul E. Burns ...
Uncle Jan
Ilka Grüning ...
Aunt Klara (as Ilka Gruning)


When mobster Walt Radak tries to trick independent trucker Steve Randall into transporting stolen furs, Steve alerts the police, and Walt's young brother Al is caught and held for a cop-killing. When ruthless Radak tries to extort Steve's help in clearing Al, Steve and his young wife flee for their lives, only to find that the police are also in pursuit. With every man's hand against them, Steve and Anne must repeatedly abandon their temporary refuges. Finally, one midnight, the showdown... Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


MURDER at any moment! SUSPENSE... in every step!!!


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Release Date:

9 May 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Desesperado  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Raymond Burr's fourth film roll. He became a film noir regular, usually playing a heavy. See more »


Ferrari and another policeman are right behind Steve when he re-enters the apartment house, but they're nowhere to be seen until after the shootout is over. See more »


Policeman with Lt. Ferrari: [Referring to Radak] Say, Lieutenant, he must have died right at the stroke of midnight. What date'll I use?
Det. Lt. Louie Ferrari: [Indifferently] Toss a coin.
See more »

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User Reviews

for a better ending
19 July 2004 | by (Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico) – See all my reviews

Raymond Burr is the main feature as the crime boss desperately trying to save his younger brother from a date with the electric chair. Directed by Anthony Mann, the pace picks up as the hour approaches for the execution, and the final minutes of the film are quite exciting, with Burr, the clock ticking down to midnight, and the police closing in. The implausible ending may have given the film more appeal but watered down the impact it was building up. Before Burr went into television, he made a believable impression as a criminal, as here, and the film loses momentum whenever he's not in it. Steve Brodie, as an unwitting small time trucker with a new wife, doesn't really convey the dramatic impact to counter Burr.

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