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Man Bait (1952)
"The Last Page" (original title)

 |  Crime, Drama  |  25 January 1952 (USA)
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 325 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 5 critic

The married owner of a bookstore is attracted to his sexy blonde clerk. He finally gives in to temptation and makes a pass at her, but that only results in him getting enmeshed in blackmail and murder.

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(screenplay), (original story)
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Title: Man Bait (1952)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
George Brent ...
John Harman
Marguerite Chapman ...
Stella Tracy
Raymond Huntley ...
Clive Oliver
Peter Reynolds ...
Jeffrey Hart
Eleanor Summerfield ...
Vi
Meredith Edwards ...
Inspector Dale
Harry Fowler ...
Joe
...
Ruby Bruce
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sybil Saxon ...
Bank Clerk (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

John Harman (George Brent), manager of an Oxford Street bookstore, reprimands an attractive young clerk, Ruby Bruce (Diana Dors), for being late to work. The same day Ruby catches Jeff Hart (Peter Reynolds) stealing a rare book, but instead of reporting him she accepts a date with him. That night, before her date, Ruby is working late with Harman, who, in a fleeting moment of intimacy, kisses her. He apologizes but later Jeff forces Ruby to blackmail Harman. When he refuses to pay off, Jeff tells Ruby to write a letter to Harman's wife, which causes her death from a heart attack. Dazed by the tragedy, Harman gives Ruby 400 pounds when she renews her demands. Jeff catches Ruby hiding part of the money, kills her and hides her body in a packing case. Harman discovers Ruby's body and realizing he will be suspect, flees in panic. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Poison never came in a prettier package! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 January 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Man Bait  »

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

This was the first of 29 Hammer films directed by Terence Fisher over the course of 22 years. The last was Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell (1974). See more »

Goofs

Where does Jeffery Hart get a key to open the case to try and steal a rare book? See more »

Connections

Referenced in Buccaneer Soul (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sunk By A Lack Of Logic
20 March 2014 | by (Isle Of Bute , Scotland) – See all my reviews

A lot of people seem to have noticed that there's not much logic gone in to this film . Before we start dishing out awards and starting up a Nobel prize for self congratulations let's be entirely honest in saying it's impossible not to notice the constant and flawed thinking that seems to have gone in to almost every scene . My own personal complaint with MAN BAIT from the outset is that two of the main characters are American living in London in the early 1950s . Let's think about this . American won the war, became a superpower overnight and was winning the peace in spectacular fashion while Britain also won the war and lost the peace along with the empire so badly that the standard of living at this time wasn't much better than in the defeated axis powers . Shocking to think that when this film was produced petrol rationing had just ended and certain foodstuffs were subject to rationing in Britain and yet a couple of Americans are quite happy to live in a starving , rain soaked archipelago where fridges and car ownership would be fairly unknown but power cuts would be common . You can understand the producers wanting to bring in a couple of American actors because it makes American distribution of the film more attractive . You can't help asking would it not have been better if the production team had concentrated on telling a more credible story

This is a pity because you can easily see the potential that MAN BAIT had in wanting to be something of a British noir classic . In fact just reading the plot summary on this page finding himself attracted to a pretty blonde clerk that leads to a plot of blackmail and murder so the bare bones of a good involving thriller are there . However it's the way the story unfolds that is a serious problem and undermines most of the potential . People don't do anything in a logical manner and they don't react to situations that you would recognise as being realistic which means the only thing you'll remember from this film is that it starred Diana Dors when she was a starlet of British cinema and that many of the people behind the scenes went on to make Hammer studios a successful horror film franchise


2 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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