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The Sniper (1952)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 7 August 1952 (Denmark)
A sniper kills young brunettes as the police attempt to grapple with the psychology of the unknown assailant.



(screen play by), (story by) (as Edna and Edward Anhalt) | 1 more credit »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast overview:
Police Lt. Frank Kafka
Eddie Miller
Police Sgt. Joe Ferris
Jean Darr
Police Insp. Anderson
Dr. James G. Kent
Mabel Paige ...
May Nelson
Geraldine Carr ...


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) »


To the police - stop me. Find me and stop me. I'm going to do it again. See more »


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

7 August 1952 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

El Francotirador  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Final credited film appearance of Geraldine Carr. See more »


In Eddie's final rooftop scene, the high-angle white-washer throws his pail to warn the workers entering the cleaners. The pail and its contents splatter on the ground. After Eddie shoots the white-washer and the camera returns to the the workers, the pavement is unmarred. See more »


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've 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 »


References Raiders of Tomahawk Creek (1950) See more »


Plaisir d'amour
Music by Johann Martini
Played by Marie Windsor in piano bar
See more »

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User Reviews

another rare and excellent noir travelogue
2 December 2004 | by (British Columbia) – See all my reviews

Someone previously has mentioned the value in this sort of location- driven film noir. As 60% of THE SNIPER was filmed on the 1951 streets of San Francisco, we and our descendants will benefit from these wonderful glimpses into the past. The story itself, perhaps somewhat naive as an earlier reporter comments, is intense and strangely current. Richard Wiley's psychiatrist makes a long,and not a little tedious, call for better treatment for sexual predators. Society is still unable to provide early diagnosis not to mention sufficient resources for treatment. As a film noir thriller, we are drawn into the sniper's pathetic personal pain. As a cautionary note, one might well choose to learn from the missteps of victims in this film and stay home and never take unnecessary risks such as meeting new people or expressing any public views that might set someone off on a killing spree. Fortunately we are garrulous beings for the most part and likely won't hibernate our lives away. Still, this film captures the randomness of psychotic death dealers fairly efficiently. The cast is uniformly excellent. I wonder if Adolf Menjou watched NAKED CITY and picked up a few disheveled pointers from Barry Fitzgerald. As a final note, I have to wonder why this excellent little film, like so many. has been hidden from us. Surely I'm not one of so few who love these gems?

26 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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