Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (... See full summary »
Vincent Lubeck is a vicious ex-convict. His criminal activities are despised by his family, but he uses and abuses them in the course of his crimes. Eventually his own brother must stand up to him. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Brisk, entertaining b-film with another terrific tough-guy performance from Lawrence Tierney
"The Hoodlum" is a brisk, entertaining b-film with another terrific tough-guy performance from Lawrence Tierney. Whenever on camera, Tierney is compulsively watchable (and makes up for the poor acting he is surrounded by) and has an incredibly intimidating screen presence. Its a shame he wasn't given a fully developed character to work with and that he was never able to become a big star due to his self-destructive personal life (his characters mirrored his real life actions often). Tierney is slightly over-the-top but believable as the title "hoodlum". The rest of the supporting cast is mediocre, especially Tierney's real-life brother Edward Tierney (was Scott Brady unavailable?). Their woodenness is overshadowed by Lawrence Tierney completely and this is one of his best roles.
The film itself is unconvincing and ludicrous, but quickly paced enough at its compact running time of 61 minutes. Viewers don't search for credibility in their b-films, they look for some cheap lurid thrills and a quick pace. The ultimate crime films such as this can commit is being boring. "The Hoodlum" is certainly never boring. Its nothing new or fresh, but the story is present with much force. Its good rainy day entertainment and worth watching if only for Tierney. Hes great in almost everything he does. (6/10)
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