Homicide detective Mike Conovan investigates the shooting of fellow detective Monigan...who apparrently was moonlighting as guard for a bookie. He finds that all the bookies in town are ... See full summary »
Quiet young Orfamay Quest from Kansas has hired private detective Philip Marlowe to find her brother. After two leads turn up with ice picks stuck in them, he discovers blackmail photos ... See full summary »
Laura Mansfield's father is killed, apparently by a telegraphic messenger. She spots Jackie Wales in a police lineup, but can't identify him positively. Later, she arranges to meet him, and... See full summary »
Edward L. Cahn
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Now grown-up, Johnny Columbo returns to New York from Italy having sworn a vendetta against the Black Hand who killed his father years earlier. Becoming romantically involved with a girl ... See full summary »
A crusty old Sargent of the Queen's Australian army in World War I befriends a small orphaned boy and his tiny sister on the night he is to go back to Australia. The Sargent emotionally ... See full summary »
Robert Z. Leonard
After a long absense from the island, Chester Tuttle returns to Tahiti to find that little has changed. His large family, particularly his scheming Uncle Jonas, would rather dance and ... See full summary »
Nick Cherney, in prison for embezzling from Torno Freight Co., sees a chance to get back at Johnny Torno through his young priest brother Jess. He pays fellow prisoner Rocky, who gets out a... See full summary »
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Homicide detective Mike Conovan investigates the shooting of fellow detective Monigan...who apparrently was moonlighting as guard for a bookie. He finds that all the bookies in town are being robbed, most upsetting to the racket bosses who can't get normal police protection. Mike encounters blind alleys and double crosses, and is distracted by his wife's growing disenchantment. Lots of police slang. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
In the opening of the movie a ballistics expert is shown firing a revolver into a box. What appears to be a .38 caliber slug is recovered and a close up of the lands and grooves are shown. The bullet, however, is in perfect condition. It is in no way mushroomed or distorted in any way as a fired bullet would be. This is wrong. Inside the box is heavy cotton that is used to stop the bullet so that it can be compared in a comparison microscope. This technique was used back then. The bullet will expend all its energy so it will not be deformed. See more »
Lili, a sizzler at the Fol-de-Rol. A figure like champagne and a heart like the cork.
See more »
Generally entertaining film noir detective film, not private eyes but "Dragnet" like plainclothes police. The Sgt. Friday character is Lieutenant Mike Conovan (Van Johnson) who leads a very complicated life, simultaneously trying to solve the murder of an off-duty police detective while breaking in rookie detective C.C. Gordon (Tom Drake). Despite all this he still has time to listen to his wife Gloria (Arlene Dahl) whine about his job and to have a tame in the line of duty fling with sexy Lili (Gloria de Haven).
The rookie detective character is basically just a excuse to throw a lot of late 40's police jargon into the script and to showcase "Dragnet" style back room police activities. Otherwise the story is nicely paced although little suspense is generated because everything is shown from the point of view of Conovan. So little is revealed about the other characters that the resolution is rather unsatisfying.
"Scene of the Crime" was a transitional film as the genre moved from gangsters and private eyes to actual police departments. The police are portrayed in a very sympathetic light; contending with low pay, disillusionment, pressures from home, and a feeling of not being appreciated.
Although Van Johnson does a decent job in the lead role, he was a poor choice (from both a physical and a acting style perspective) for the role of a cynical and conflicted tough cop. Johnson is much better suited to nice guy roles. Dahl soon gets on your nerves but you never tire of de Haven's Lili.
Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.
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