IMDb > Macao (1952)
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Macao (1952) More at IMDbPro »

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Bernard C. Schoenfeld (screenplay) and
Stanley Rubin (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for Macao on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
30 April 1952 (USA) See more »
A sultry chanteuse, a hunk on the lam and a fortune in stolen gems. See more »
Nick Cochran, an American in exile in Macao, has a chance to restore his name by helping capture an international crime lord. Undercover, can he mislead the bad guys and still woo the handsome singer/petty crook, Julie Benson? Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Jane Russell gets rare good role in utterly shallow but playful and stylish adventure See more (39 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Robert Mitchum ... Nick Cochran

Jane Russell ... Julie Benson

William Bendix ... Lawrence C. Trumble

Thomas Gomez ... Police Lt. Sebastian

Gloria Grahame ... Margie

Brad Dexter ... Vincent Halloran
Edward Ashley ... Martin Stewart
Philip Ahn ... Itzumi
Vladimir Sokoloff ... Kwan Sum Tang
Don Zelaya ... Gimpy - Piano Player
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Abdullah Abbas ... Arabian (uncredited)
Rico Alaniz ... Bus Driver (uncredited)

Trevor Bardette ... Alvaris (uncredited)
Genevieve Bell ... Woman Passenger (uncredited)
Truman Bradley ... Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
George Chan ... Chinese Photographer (uncredited)
Spencer Chan ... Hood (uncredited)
W.T. Chang ... Old Fisherman (uncredited)
John Daheim ... Det. Lt. Daniel Lombardy (uncredited)
Art Dupuis ... Portuguese Pilot (uncredited)
Lee Tung Foo ... Merchant (uncredited)
Nacho Galindo ... Bus Driver (uncredited)
H.W. Gim ... Sampan Pilot (uncredited)
Everett Glass ... Garcia (unconfirmed) (uncredited)
Phil Harron ... Sikh (uncredited)
Sheldon Jett ... Dutch Tourist (uncredited)
Harold J. Kennedy ... Drunken Lecherous Salesman (uncredited)
Marc Krah ... Desk Clerk (uncredited)
Tommy Lee ... Chinese Victim (uncredited)
James B. Leong ... Hood (uncredited)
Weaver Levy ... Chang (uncredited)
Alex Montoya ... Bartender (uncredited)
Walter Ng ... Fisherman (uncredited)
Emory Parnell ... Ship's Captain (uncredited)
Manuel París ... Bartender (uncredited)
Alfredo Santos ... Hood (uncredited)
May Takasugi ... The Barber (uncredited)
Philip Van Zandt ... Customs Official (uncredited)
Michael Visaroff ... Russian Doorman (uncredited)
Iris Wong ... Croupier (uncredited)
William Yip ... Rickshaw Driver (uncredited)
Maria Sen Young ... Croupier (uncredited)

Directed by
Josef von Sternberg 
Nicholas Ray (uncredited)
Writing credits
Bernard C. Schoenfeld (screenplay) and
Stanley Rubin (screenplay)

Robert Creighton Williams (story) (as Bob Williams)

George Bricker  uncredited
Edward Chodorov  uncredited
Norman Katkov  uncredited
Frank L. Moss  uncredited
Walter Newman  dialogue (uncredited)

Produced by
Samuel Bischoff .... executive producer
Alex Gottlieb .... producer
Howard Hughes .... executive producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Anthony Collins 
Cinematography by
Harry J. Wild (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Samuel E. Beetley 
Robert Golden 
Art Direction by
Ralph Berger 
Albert S. D'Agostino 
Set Decoration by
Harley Miller 
Darrell Silvera 
Costume Design by
Michael Woulfe (gowns)
Makeup Department
Mel Berns .... makeup artist
Larry Germain .... hair stylist
Production Management
Jerry Wald .... production supervisor: additional photography (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
James E. Casey .... assistant director: additional photography (uncredited)
Richard Davol .... second unit director (uncredited)
William Dorfman .... assistant director: additional photography (uncredited)
Lowell J. Farrell .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Keye Luke .... painter: murals (uncredited)
Edward Vorkapich .... sketch artist (uncredited)
Sound Department
Clem Portman .... sound
Earl A. Wolcott .... sound (as Earl Wolcott)
John Daheim .... stunts (uncredited)
Paul Stader .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Ernest Bachrach .... still photographer (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Joan Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
C. Bakaleinikoff .... musical director
Hugh Martin .... vocal arranger
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
81 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Australia:PG | Canada:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-16 | Spain:T | Sweden:15 | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (certificate #14783) | West Germany:12 (cut version: 77') | West Germany:16 (nf)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Producer Howard Hughes fired director Josef von Sternberg about a third of the way through and shot the rest with Nicholas Ray. However, in the Spring 1972 edition of "Focus on Film: screenwriter Walter Newman said he and Nicholas Ray were asked by RKO production boss Jerry Wald to write and direct three scenes that "tied the story together a bit." Newman sad he did a love scene in a Chinese junk with Mitchum and Russell.See more »
Audio/visual unsynchronized: Whenever Julie Benson (Jane Russell) sings in the gambling den, The piano and bass guitar accompaniment don't match the sound of the full orchestra backing her up.See more »
Lt. Sebastian:[referring to Julie Benson] Besides her obvious talents, she also sings.See more »
Movie Connections:
Ocean BreezeSee more »


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32 out of 41 people found the following review useful.
Jane Russell gets rare good role in utterly shallow but playful and stylish adventure, 5 August 2002
Author: bmacv from Western New York

Josef von Sternberg began Macao (and copped the directorial credit), but Nicholas Ray finished it. Nonetheless, it abounds with Sternberg's branded flounces and fetishes. As in Shanghai Express and The Shanghai Gesture, he trowels on the Orientalism in thick impasto (Sternberg could have made the best Charlie Chan movie of them all).

A nighttime chase through the Macao docks opens the movie (to be rhymed near its conclusion): A white-suited European is pursued by knife-throwing Chinese thugs; he falls in the water when one blade finds its mark. A badge filched from him pocket shows him to be a police detective.

Into this world of Asian intrigue sails a boat from Hong Kong, just 35 miles up the coast. On it is the motley crew of salesman William Bendix, drifter Robert Mitchum and mysterious woman Jane Russell, who lifts Mitchum's wallet. Sans passport, Mitchum comes to the attention of the Macao police chief (Thomas Gomez), who reports the suspicious stranger to gambling kingpin Brad Dexter. Dexter assumes Mitchum is a cop he knows to be on his way to extradite him back to Hong Kong....

It's a playfully plotted adventure story. Russell gets a gig singing at Dexter's club in eye-popping gowns which actually aren't any more provocative than the black-and-white daytime outfits she traipses around in, wielding a parasol. She fares better than Gloria Grahame, as Dexter's moll, looking washed out and largely wasted (though she puts her distinctive spin on a couple of lines). Mitchum by this time has done this role – the lippy but laconic reluctant hero – so often he could do it in his sleep, which, given his hooded eyes, may be the truth of the matter.

Macao is an utterly shallow film done with energy and style. The plotting remains perfunctory, but the play of shadows throughout remains transfixing – especially in the set-piece near the end, again on the dark waterfront, with ropes and nets casting their creepy spell. And the movie provides Russell with one of her few opportunities to flaunt her real, if narrow, talents: in addition to the statuesque figure that caught Howard Hughes' eye, she had spunk and sass. That's what Sternberg saw, and he fell for it. We do, too.

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