6.8/10
1,636
35 user 23 critic

Union Station (1950)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 1951 (Chile)
A sharp-eyed woman spots a man with a gun on a train and her alert to the railroad police lead to the kidnapping of a blind heiress by a ruthless thug.

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(screenplay), (story)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Inspector Donnelly
...
Joe Beacom
...
Marge Wrighter
...
Lorna Murchison
Herbert Heyes ...
Henry L. Murchison
Don Dunning ...
Gus Hadder
Fred Graff ...
Vince Marley
James Seay ...
Detective Eddie Shattuck
...
Detective Gottschalk (as Parley E. Baer)
Ralph Sanford ...
Detective Fay
Richard Karlan ...
Detective George Stein
Bigelow Sayre ...
Detective Ross
Charles Dayton ...
Howard Kettner
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Storyline

Secretary Joyce Willecombe grows suspicious of two men boarding her train and is referred to 'Tough Willy' Calhoun, head of the Union Station police. The all-seeing, no-nonsense Calhoun is initially skeptical, but the men (who escape) prove to be involved in a kidnap case. Calhoun calls in equally tough police Inspector Donnelly, but the ruthless kidnapper's precision planning stays one jump ahead of them. Most of the action centers around bustling Union Station. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Details

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Release Date:

1951 (Chile)  »

Also Known As:

Manhattan Madness  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The chase scene on the elevated train used the Third Ave El in New York City for long shots and the Pacific Electric Railway cars in L.A. for close in shots on the train. See more »

Goofs

When Joe Beacom peeks out of the 'Scenic Route' sign before trying to collect the ransom, a black board is moved alongside the camera and can be seen just before we see Joe inside the sign. See more »

Quotes

Lt. William Calhoun: [to Joyce] If anyone asks me to stick my neck out, I want to know who's doing the askin'.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A tough thriller
28 April 1999 | by (Toronto, Canada) – See all my reviews

This film reminded me of others from the late '40's up to 1950, of "D.O.A.", in some ways, with its tense realism. The cold, merciless criminal mastermind played by Lyle Bettger was a (considerably) more balanced version of the sinister characters portrayed by James Cagney in "White Heat" or Richard Widmark in "Kiss of Death".

This is an early police procedural, with the railway cops working closely with the New York City police. According to Leslie Halliwell, "Naked City" -- which I've somehow managed never to see -- is the prototype for all the films of this type. The style eventually became overfamiliar, and very diluted, on television with shows like "Dragnet". "Naked City" cast Barry Fitzgerald unexpectedly as the lead detective, and he repeats that role here.

The two principal stars of "Union Station" are William Holden and Nancy Olson, who also co-starred in "Sunset Boulevard" this same year, 1950. Nancy plays Bill's conscience, constantly concerned that the interests of the kidnap victim don't get overlooked in the hunt for the criminals.

Holden is quite good -- he really started to come into his own at this time -- indicating more depth than was strictly required for the stalwart hero in a crime story. Bettger shows calculated menace. The two make worthy opponents.


29 of 39 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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