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The Prowler (1951)

When Susan Gilvray reports a prowler outside her house police officer Webb Garwood investigates and sparks fly. If only her husband wasn't in the way.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Katherine Warren ...
Grace Crocker (as Katharine Warren)
Emerson Treacy ...
Madge Blake ...
Wheaton Chambers ...
Dr. William R. James
Robert Osterloh ...
Coroner
Sherry Hall ...
Louise Lorimer ...
Motel Manager
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Storyline

In a fancy suburb in California, the gorgeous housewife Susan Gilvray finds a prowler outside her house late one night and she calls the police. Officer Webb Garwood and his partner answer the call but do not find anyone. Later Webb returns to Susan's house with the pretext of checking if everything is OK. Susan invites him in to have coffee with her. Webb soon learns that Susan is married to John Gilvray, a middle-aged broadcaster of a late night radio show. They also discover that they are from the same hometown. Webb makes a pass at Susan and even though she tries to put him off they soon start a love affair. When John becomes suspicious Susan ends her relationship with Webb. Though difficult Webb stays away from Susan. Without Susan's knowledge Webb plots a scheme to get rid of John; he simulates a scenario where John is "accidently" shot dead. There is an inquest and it is ruled that John Gilvray's death was not intentional. Webb quits the police-force a job he was never happy ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Watch out for THE PROWLER See more »


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Details

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Release Date:

25 May 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cost of Living  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The radio announcer heard throughout the film is actually the voice of blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who wrote the film under the pseudonym, Hugo Butler. See more »

Goofs

When Webb returns to his car after peeking in the window of the second building in the ghost town he walks across an existing set of tire tracks. How can there be other tire tracks if no one else has been there for many months? See more »

Quotes

Webb Garwood: I didn't do it Susan. I ll swear that by the only thing I ever really loved, and that's you.
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Connections

Featured in Kika (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Baby
Lyrics by Dick Mack
Music by Lyn Murray
Sung by Robert Carroll (as Bob Carroll)
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User Reviews

 
Van Heflin is great
21 September 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Van Heflin is "The Prowler" in this 1951 noir directed by Joseph Losey and also starring Evelyn Keyes. Heflin plays a bitter cop named Webb who meets the lonely Susan (Keyes), whose husband works at night on the radio, when he investigates a prowler at her house. He returns, ostensibly to check up on her, and they discover they're from the same part of the country. Soon, they're involved in a love affair that has serious implications.

Losey was a hit or miss director. He was blacklisted and made several films starring Dirk Bogarde in Europe, including the amazing The Servant and a big miss, Modesty Blaise. Here he's on the money with a suspenseful, well done film. Van Heflin is brilliant as Webb, who finally sees a chance at making his dreams come true, and Keyes is wonderful as Susan, disappointed in her marriage.

"The Prowler" was restored by UCLA, and for some reason, when Christopher-Jan Horrocks discussed it on TCM, he described the story incorrectly.

Frankly, I thought this film had a couple of plot problems, but I can't go into them without giving the film away. The event that the plot hinges on is certainly a daring one for those days. I'll just say that the two main characters would have had to have been Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt for a total stranger to have realized what he realized immediately.

Well worth checking out.


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