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Big Jim McLain (1952)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, History | 30 August 1952 (USA)
In the post-war Hawaii, House Un-American Activities Committee investigators Jim McLain and Mal Baxter hunt down communists.

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Writers:

(quotes from "The Devil and Dan'l Webster"), | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Nancy Vallon
...
Mal Baxter
...
Sturak
...
Madge
...
Robert Henried
Hal Baylor ...
Poke
Gayne Whitman ...
Dr. Gelster
...
Olaf
Robert Keys ...
Edwin White
...
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)
...
Mr. Lexiter
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:

He's a Go-Get-'Em Guy for the U.S.A. on a Treason Trail that leads Half-a-World Away! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jim McLain  »

Box Office

Budget:

$826,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are several ships identifiable in the film. The ship on the left that McLain and Baxter pass, while on the picket boat to see the U.S.S. Arizona (BB-39), is the Fletcher-class destroyer U.S.S. Renshaw (DD-499). Built in 1942, she saw action in World War II, Korea and Vietnam, earning a total of 19 battle stars, before being decommissioned, struck and sold for scrap in 1970. The other ship on the right is the Navajo-class fleet tug U.S.S. Mataco (AT/ATF-86), also built in 1942. She participated in WW II, Korea and Vietnam, earning nine battle stars and seven campaign stars, before being decommissioned in 1977 and struck in 1979. The next ship they pass in front of is the U.S.S. Mattaponi (AO-41), a Kennebec-class oiler. Commissioned in 1942, she mostly served in the Atlantic and Mediterranean theaters during WWII. Decomissioned and recommissioned three times over the next three decades, she was finally struck in 1970 and sold for scrap in 1973. The ship depicted at the end of the film is the Commencement Bay-class escort carrier U.S.S. Bairoko (CVE-115). Commissioned in 1945, too late for participation in WWII, she was recommissioned in 1950 for Korea. Decommissioned again in 1955, she was struck and sold for scrap in 1960. See more »

Goofs

Jim states that the USS Arizona "is still carried on Navy lists as a fighting ship of the line." The Arizona was actually officially struck from the Navy Vessel Register in December 1942. See more »

Quotes

Jim McLain: Lot of wonderful things written into our constitution that were meant for honest decent citizens. I resent the fact that it can be used and abused by the very people who want to destroy it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Closing credits epilogue: The Incidents in this motion picture are based on the files of the Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, Congress of the United States. Names and places have been changed. We gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of this Committee. See more »

Connections

References I'll See You in My Dreams (1951) See more »

Soundtracks

The Year of Jubilo
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played during the opening credits
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Best scene
26 May 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Early in the film Wayne and Arness take the US Navy "picket boat" out to Battleship Row and the superstructure of the USS Arizona, long before the familiar white memorial was built. This little side trip provides a continuity. The 50's fear of Communism was seen, in that era, as being informed by the experience of the attack at Pearl Harbor 11 years before. Folks then knew from bitter, bloody experience, that evil in the world existed, and they were trying to thwart the new evil. It may appear ham-handed to us today, but, in the context of the times, finding the enemy through investigative techniques probably appeared preferable to another sneak attack. Having read the above comments, I also appreciate the way the writers heaped praise on the local, Hawaiian, police.


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