7.5/10
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51 user 22 critic

Act of Violence (1949)

Passed | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | February 1949 (USA)
An embittered, vengeful POW stalks his former commanding officer who betrayed his men's planned escape attempt from a Nazi prison camp.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
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On TV

Airs Tue. Dec. 13, 1:15 PM on TCM

1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Pat
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Ann
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Johnny
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Gavery
Harry Antrim ...
Fred
Connie Gilchrist ...
Martha
...
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Storyline

War veteran Frank Enley seems to be a happily married small-town citizen until he realises Joe Parkson is in town. It seems Parkson is out for revenge because of something that happened in a German POW camp, and when a frightened Enley suddenly leaves for a convention in L.A., Parkson is close behind. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The manhunt no woman could stop! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

February 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Akt der Gewalt  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,290,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its USA television premiere in Philadelphia Sunday 14 October 1956 on WFIL (Channel 6), followed in Los Angeles Tuesday 23 October 1956 on KTTV (Channel 11) and in New York City Tuesday 4 December 1956 on WCBS (Channel 2); in San Francisco it was first seen 11 January 1958 on KGO (Channel 7). See more »

Goofs

At the end of the movie Joe Parkson bends the knee of his right leg, the 'lame' leg he has been nearly unable to bend throughout the entire story. See more »

Quotes

Joe Parkson: Sure, I was in the hospital, but I didn't go crazy. I kept myself sane. You know how? I kept saying to myself: Joe, you're the only one alive that knows what he did. You're the one that's got to find him, Joe. I kept remembering. I kept thinking back to that prison camp. One of them lasted to the morning. By then, you couldn't tell his voice belonged to a man. He sounded like a dog that got hit by a truck and left him in the street.
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Connections

Referenced in American Grindhouse (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Robert Ryan is a man bent on vengeance...
22 September 2006 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

Fred Zinnemann does it again. He was a master at film noir during the early '40s, first with some B-films (GRAND CENTRAL MURDER, THE KID GLOVE KILLER--both starring VAN HEFLIN) and some seven or eight years later with ACT OF VIOLENCE. His direction and Robert Surtees' excellent B&W photography make this taut story even more watchable.

VAN HEFLIN goes on a fishing trip and finds himself being shadowed by a man he knows wants to kill him--a man who knows about his past when they were both soldiers and imprisoned in a German prison camp during World War II. When ROBERT RYAN shows up at Heflin's home to inquire about his whereabouts, his wife JANET LEIGH willingly tells Ryan where to find him, not knowing the truth about her husband's past.

From there on, it's a manhunt and at first our loyalties are with Heflin, until it turns out that he's not the hero but an anti-hero who deserves being shot. After this registers, we understand why Ryan is so intent on his mission to kill. Toward the end, Heflin runs into MARY ASTOR, a prostitute with a heart of gold, who tells him what he needs to do to get a hit man get rid of Ryan. But then Heflin, before the kill, has a change of mind. That's all the wrap-up on the story I'll give here.

There's a final twist at the end, but the whole film is absorbing and well worth your time with Heflin, especially, giving one of his most intense performances and Mary Astor doing a vivid job in a small role.


13 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Premise doesn't add up Turfseer
Was this remade as 'History of Violence?' Groucho-13
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the end of 'act of violence'??? chrelle
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