Johnny Damico botches a murder case and is suspended from the force. In reality, he is put undercover to identify the mysterious boss of the NY waterfront who has murdered everyone in his way. Will Johnny be next in line?
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Edward G. Robinson,
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Joseph H. Lewis
Dame May Whitty,
Police detective Damico, outwitted by mob killer Blackie Clay, is nominally suspended; actually he goes undercover (as Tim Flynn, ex-con longshoreman) to find Clay and expose the waterfront rackets. In character, Damico throws his weight around so much that the mobsters try to get rid of him; surviving this, he begins to realize that few of those around him are what they seem. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
In scenes set in a pawn shop and an all-night diner (apparently shot in interiors on standing street sets), actors' frosty breath can be seen even though they're supposed to be inside real businesses that would presumably have been heated. See more »
Did Elia Kazan know about this movie when he made "On the Waterfront"?
I got to ask -- because so much of the plot of "On the Waterfront" is here. Broderick Crawford is first rate (not as good as in "All the King's Men"); because Crawford has none of the depth and range of Brando. Plus, this is not a longshoreman's movie -- it's the cops' movie. The police are the key players; they get the full camera foreground and background. But how could "On the Waterfront" (1954) have existed without "The Mob" (1951)? All the character and story leads are here -- plus our hero gets a threatening backseat ride in the car with a gun pointed at his gut. The police forensic details are excellent; not hokey (and probably based on WW2 techniques?). It's surprising this movie isn't better known. Again, quality-wise, it's not "A+" as a film -- more like "B+". It's got long, excellent passages that are then followed by filler, Hollywood product (like the scenes with Ernest Borgnine). But what's great about "The Mob" is how when it works it rings true about the life and struggles of blue collar Americans just after the victory of WW2. Where's their victory? Except for the cops. In sum, tough minded doozie of a film.
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