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His Kind of Woman (1951)

A deported gangster's plan to re-enter the USA involves skulduggery at a Mexican resort, and gambler Dan Milner is caught in the middle.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Bill Lusk
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Leslie Banning ...
Jennie Stone (as Leslye Banning)
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John Mylong ...
Carleton G. Young ...
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Storyline

Nick Ferraro, deported crime boss, needs to re-enter the USA. His plan involves "honest" gambler Dan Milner, who's subjected to a series of "misfortunes," then bribed to take a trip to Mexico. En route, Dan meets chanteuse Lenore Brent, truly his kind of woman. But on arrival at posh Morros Lodge in Baja California, Dan finds the ostensibly rich, carefree guests all playing roles...except, possibly, ham actor Mark Cardigan. What does Ferraro want with him? Can he trust anyone? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They were two of a kind ! ...and bound to meet, but neither of them knew what such a meeting would mean!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

10 January 1952 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Smiler with a Gun  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Howard Hughes' whimsical decision to shoot the boat sinking scene with Vincent Price cost him $150,000. See more »

Goofs

When Milner bumps into Cardigan on the stairs, one of the bullets on Cardigan's hunting vest has slipped almost all the way through the holder. In the next shot, all of the bullets are in place and evenly aligned. See more »

Quotes

Dan Milner: I'm too young to die. How about you?
Mark Cardigan: Too well-known.
Dan Milner: Well, if you do get killed, I'll make sure you get a first-rate funeral in Hollywood, at Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
Mark Cardigan: I've already had it. My last picture died there.
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Connections

Featured in Film Noir: Bringing Darkness to Light (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Five Little Miles From San Berdoo
Performed by Jane Russell (as Miss Russell)
Written by Sam Coslow
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User Reviews

 
Entertaining Comedy-Thriller
19 March 2004 | by (Tunbridge Wells, England) – See all my reviews

The central character of `His Kind of Woman' is Dan Milner, a down-on-his luck gambler, who is persuaded by local villains to undertake a mysterious assignment that involves his travelling to a luxury Mexican holiday resort. On arriving there, Miler meets and falls for Lenore, the beautiful mistress of the famous actor Mark Cardigan. Lenore is hoping to marry Cardigan after he has obtained a divorce from his wife; he, however, is having second thoughts after being warned by his agent that a divorce would be bad for his clean-cut image. As the film progresses, the reason why Milner has been lured to the resort becomes clear; the man behind the scheme is Nick Ferraro, an Italian gangster who has been deported from the USA for his criminal activities. Ferraro wants to return without attracting the attention of the US authorities, and is hoping to do so using Milner's passport, having first disposed of Milner himself and undergone plastic surgery to make himself look like the dead man.

In a way, the film can be seen as three films in one. The opening scenes are shot in the dark, menacing film noir style. (Robert Mitchum appeared in a number of films of this type around this period). When Milner arrives in the resort the mood becomes lighter, and the film resembles more one of those `sophisticated' comedies about divorce and adultery that were the nearest that the fifties got to sex comedies. When the villains arrive and the nature of their plans becomes clear, the mood of the film changes again. It does not, however, revert to the dark mood of the opening scenes, but rather resembles a comedy action-thriller as Milner and his allies (principally Cardigan) try to thwart Ferraro and his designs.

Despite these shifts from one style of film-making to another, the film hangs together reasonably well. The real star performance comes from Vincent Price as Cardigan, the sort of `luvvie' actor who overacts as much in real life as he does in the swashbuckling roles for which he has become famous, and whose conversation is enlivened by frequent resort to Shakespearean or pseudo-Shakespearean language. Cardigan is delighted to be caught up in a real crime drama, as it gives him a chance to act out his on-screen persona for real. (I found myself wondering if his character was based on Errol Flynn). Although he is at times outshone by Price, Mitchum succeeds in making Milner a likeable hero despite his rather seedy past. Jane Russell was not the greatest of actresses, but here she brings the necessary touch of glamour and sex-appeal to the part of Lenore. There are, as other reviewers have pointed out, holes in the plot, but given that this is light-hearted entertainment, played as much for laughs as for thrills, these should not trouble the viewer too much. Not a classic, but still very enjoyable for all that. 7/10.


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