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Tough Assignment (1949)

In order to investigate a modern-day cattle rustling operation, a newspaper reporter and his girlfriend infiltrate the gang.



(story), (screenplay) (as Miltan Luban)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dan Reilly (as Don Barry)
Marjorie Steele ...
Margie Reilly
Boss Morgan
Joe (as John Cason)
Frank Richards ...
'Hutch' Hutchison
Edit Angold ...
Mrs. Schultz
Leander De Cordova ...
Chief Investigator Patterson
Al Foster


Don Reilly, a Los Angeles newspaper reporter in 1949, recently married to Margie, a photographer employed by the same newspaper, stumbles upon the fact that gangsters are forcing butcher shops to sell their unlicensed beef, and he persuades his managing editor to allow him to follow up on the story. His bride goes with him on an investigation that leads him to the ranch hideout of the gang, who are rustling cattle using fast, refrigeration trucks. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


An Action-Packed Expose of Cattle Rustling Today


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Release Date:

15 November 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cowboy-Gangster  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


One of a handful of films shot with "The new Garutso lens for 3-Dimensional effect". The lens in question was hardly "new", having been developed and used in films since the '30's, but it made great ballyhoo. The lens is an extreme wide angle device that could be used with a large assortment of diopter filters, hence making everything seem, from foreground to background, in perfect focus. See more »

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User Reviews

Sid Melton?!? As a gangster?!?!
4 August 2008 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This movie is about a reporter and his photographer wife who accidentally become involved with a vicious gang of modern day cattle rustlers! Oddly, this gang is more like organized crime and the couple see a potential story if they can infiltrate them. The trouble is, and this makes the film a bit silly, is that the leaders of the gang know who they are--so taking up with some of their lower level gang members seemed awfully risky and was destined to be discovered. Still, the story was moderately interesting.

This film can be found on the DVD "Forgotten Noir Double Feature Vol. 5: FBI Girl / Tough Assignment". FBI GIRL and TOUGH ASSIGNMENT were made by Lippert Productions, a small-time Hollywood film company. Unlike FBI GIRL, TOUGH ASSIGNMENT looked very low budget and cheap. It also suffered from sub-par writing, as the film oddly couldn't decide if it wanted to be a serious crime drama or a comedy--as it had BOTH in the film! That's because veteran low-budget comedian Sid Melton ("Alf Monroe" from GREEN ACRES) is one of the gang members--though anyone with half a brain would question this. He's very small, makes wise-cracks and one-liners CONSTANTLY and seems about as threatening as a cheeze puff!! Why they stuck this guy in what should have been a hard-bitten crime drama is beyond me--and this makes the film just another B-picture.

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