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Big Jim McLain (1952)

 -  Action | Crime | Drama  -  30 August 1952 (USA)
5.2
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 1,190 users  
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U.S. House Un-American Activities Committee investigators Jim McLain and Mal Baxter attempt to break up a ring of Communist Party troublemakers in Hawaii (ignoring somewhat, as do their ... See full summary »

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(quotes from "The Devil and Dan'l Webster"), , 5 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Nancy Vallon
...
Mal Baxter
...
Sturak
Veda Ann Borg ...
Madge
...
Robert Henried
Hal Baylor ...
Poke
Gayne Whitman ...
Dr. Gelster
Gordon Jones ...
Olaf
Robert Keys ...
Edwin White
John Hubbard ...
Lt. Cmdr. Clint Grey
Soo Yong ...
Mrs. Namaka (as Madame Soo Yong)
Dan Liu ...
Dan Liu, Honolulu Chief of Police (as Honolulu Chief of Police Dan Liu)
Vernon 'Red' McQueen ...
Phil Briggs (as Red McQueen)
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Storyline

U.S. House Un-American Activities Committee investigators Jim McLain and Mal Baxter attempt to break up a ring of Communist Party troublemakers in Hawaii (ignoring somewhat, as do their superiors in the Congress, that membership in the Communist Party was, at the time, legal in the U.S.) Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE BIG MAN IN HIS BIG ADVENTURE! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jim McLain  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$826,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While there may indeed have been some so-called 'stolen' scenes, the one in the restaurant isn't one of them. The bystanders were watching the action because of the loud and drunken behavior of Madge (Veda Ann Borg) and the actor who comes to their table. See more »

Goofs

Early in the film, when they're flying into the Hawaiian Islands, the stewardess points out Molokai Island "on the left" and Oahu "on the right." But the views out the windows show the opposite. Otherwise the plane would have to be flying backward. See more »

Quotes

Poke: I've had a belly full of this East Texas cotton-chopping jerk.
Jim McLain: Did you ever chop cotton?
Poke: Nah, I'm from the country club set. That chopping cotton's for white trash and niggers!
[McLain punches Poke and a fight ensues]
See more »

Connections

Featured in The John Wayne Anthology (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

My Old Kentucky Home, Good-Night
(uncredited)
Music by Stephen Foster
Played during the opening credits
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A period propaganda film
9 June 2009 | by (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) – See all my reviews

It's interesting and difficult to assess films with extremist viewpoints that were made at times when their viewpoints were considered perfectly acceptable. BIRTH OF A NATION is one such flick, with its heroic Ku Klux Klansmen saving the day.

BIG JIM MCCLAIN is another film of this ilk. It was made in a time when a small but unfortunately powerful political and media cabal successfully convinced the public that Commie Spies were infiltrating everywhere. To stop them, all we needed to do was rip up the Constitution and set up a secret police to arrest these evil foreigners and their native-born Fellow Travellers. That we had just spent five years stopping a similar system in Germany never entered into most folks' minds.

But I digress....

Wayne and Arness star as agents of the secret police.... err, investigators for the House Un-American Activities Commission ferreting out a group of obviously intellectual and well-traveled Commies and Commie Dupes who use the Constitution to prevent their prosecution. That's pretty much sums up the film. The film is a sad recitation of various bugaboos held by the conservatives. The Commies are highly intelligent, well-educated, and philosophical, and possess a wide view of the relationship between nations and an even better understanding of the rights inherent in the Constitution. The Good Guys are common folk without any intellectual pretense, possess a strong nationalistic bias, and dislike the Constitution because it prevents their actions.

Hmm, sounds like the Bush Adminstration....

The film is ripe for revival. The same script performed now could be a riotous dark comedy. Maybe throw in a few catchy song and dance numbers.


20 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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