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The Sniper (1952)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  9 May 1952 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 1,522 users  
Reviews: 38 user | 22 critic

A sniper kills young brunettes as the police attempt to grapple with the psychology of the unknown assailant.

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(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Sniper (1952)

The Sniper (1952) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Police Lt. Frank Kafka
Arthur Franz ...
Eddie Miller
...
Police Sgt. Joe Ferris
...
Jean Darr
...
Police Insp. Anderson
...
Dr. James G. Kent
Mabel Paige ...
Landlady
Marlo Dwyer ...
May Nelson
Geraldine Carr ...
Checker
Edit

Storyline

Apparently rejected by women all his life, a loner with a high-power rifle starts on a trail of murder. The police are baffled by the apparently random killings until their psychologist comes up with some ideas. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

police | rifle | killing | sniper | murder | See All (190) »

Taglines:

They were all brunettes... all under 30... and they all crossed the path of "THE SNIPER" See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 May 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El Francotirador  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Arthur Franz showed up to interview with just producer Stanley Kramer, but Kramer was so impressed he called in director Edward Dmytryk, and both thought Franz was right for the Eddie Miller part. See more »

Goofs

Miller takes a full beer out of the refrigerator and takes one sip, but in the next shot, 80% of the bottle is empty. See more »

Quotes

Police Photographer: [Referring to photographing the dead body] How about one with the sheet off, Lieutenant? Just one, that's all.
Police Lt. Frank Kafka: Not a chance!
Police Photographer: Why not? What's the matter?
Police Lt. Frank Kafka: Listen, food's too expensive to spoil people's appetite for breakfast. I wouldn't want a dead girl on my front page.
Police Photographer: You've got one anyway.
Police Lt. Frank Kafka: I don't like dead girls on the front page or anywhere else.
Police Sgt. Joe Ferris: [Interjecting] Should of been with me last night. You wouldn't have liked a couple of live ones. I had a lot of trouble last night.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in America's Sweethearts (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Pennies from Heaven
(uncredited)
Music by Arthur Johnston
Words by Johnny Burke (1936)
Played by Marie Windsor in piano bar
See more »

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User Reviews

A Noir Sleeper that Never Misses its Mark
17 May 2002 | by (Out there in the dark) – See all my reviews

THE SNIPER is an atmospheric, well-produced minor Film Noir.

Arthur Franz gives a nicely shaded performance as a tortured soul who cannot control impulses to kill women. We gather his psychosis stems from maltreatment by his mother, but this is not delved into in any detail. There are several very effectively chilling scenes depicting the murders, fairly graphic for 1952. In one sequence, the killer chooses his victim after watching her interviewed on TV, when she announces her home address. Franz is particularly chilling here, we see him decide on his victim and then jump to the aftermath of the crime. Marie Windsor plays a relatively subdued character: a nice woman with a streetwise 'edge'. Several other character actors we all like to see fill out the rest of the film: Charles Lane, Jay Novello, Carl Benton Reid, Richard Kiley, Frank Faylen.

Best of all: the San Francisco locations. Roughly 60% of the picture was filmed on locations that are very well used. Films from this period ("Crime Wave" is a prime example) serve a non-entertainment purpose in their pervasive use of location material. With this much footage of SF in 1952, we can get a real sense of what the city looked like at the time.

Former Bad Boy of Music, George Antheil provides a sparingly used, but very expressive, late-Romantic-style score (main title is especially good)


27 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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