Up 17,236 this week

The Sniper (1952)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  9 May 1952 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.1/10 from 1,550 users  
Reviews: 38 user | 24 critic

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



(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

TV Spotlight: The Top 10 Episodes of "The Walking Dead"

We've curated a list of the top 10 episodes of "The Walking Dead" according to the IMDb user ratings.

Read More

Related News

New On DVD This Week
| The Flickcast

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 31 titles
created 25 May 2012
a list of 28 titles
created 31 May 2012
a list of 729 titles
created 02 Jan 2013
a list of 24 titles
created 7 months ago
a list of 41 titles
created 7 months ago

Related Items

Search for "The Sniper" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Sniper (1952)

The Sniper (1952) on IMDb 7.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Sniper.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Lineup (1958)
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In San Francisco, a psychopathic gangster and his mentor retrieve heroin packages carried by unsuspecting travelers.

Director: Don Siegel
Stars: Eli Wallach, Robert Keith, Richard Jaeckel
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Peter, a WW II 'displaced person' about to be deported jumps ship in New York harbor in an effort to find an ex-G.I named Tom whom he helped during the war and can prove Peter's right to ... See full summary »

Director: Maxwell Shane
Stars: Vittorio Gassman, Gloria Grahame, Ann Robinson
Human Desire (1954)
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A Korean War vet returns to his job as a railroad engineer and becomes involved in a sordid affair with a co-worker's wife and murder.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Broderick Crawford
Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A woman planning to testify against the mob must be protected against their assassins on the train trip from Chicago to Los Angeles.

Director: Richard Fleischer
Stars: Charles McGraw, Marie Windsor, Jacqueline White
Scandal Sheet (1952)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The editor of an exploitation newspaper commits a murder and assigns his protégé to investigate hoping to divert attention away from himself.

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: John Derek, Donna Reed, Broderick Crawford
Force of Evil (1948)
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An unethical lawyer, with an older brother he wants to help, becomes a partner with a client in the numbers racket.

Director: Abraham Polonsky
Stars: John Garfield, Thomas Gomez, Marie Windsor
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Claude is a ruthless and efficient contract killer - until he finds his next target is a woman.

Director: Irving Lerner
Stars: Vince Edwards, Phillip Pine, Herschel Bernardi
Pushover (1954)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A larcenous undercover cop falls for the beautiful moll of a bank robber on the run and together they double-cross the hood nd the cops.

Director: Richard Quine
Stars: Fred MacMurray, Kim Novak, Philip Carey
Nightfall (1957)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Through a series of bizarre coincidences artist finds himself falsely accused of bank robbery and murder and is pursued by the authorities and the real killers.

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Aldo Ray, Anne Bancroft, Brian Keith
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Four vets attending college on the GI Bill and a cabaret singer try to rob a Rno Casino and pull off the perfect crime.

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: Guy Madison, Kim Novak, Brian Keith
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A retired mob accountant is drawn back in when his brothers, who have recently made a hit for the organization, decide to go to the authorities.

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: Richard Conte, Dianne Foster, Kathryn Grant
Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A young doctor falls in love with a disturbed young woman, becomes involved in the death of her husband, and has to flee with her to the Mexican border.

Director: John Farrow
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Claude Rains, Faith Domergue


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 ...
Marlo Dwyer ...
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) »


Hungrily, he watched her walk down the street...and then he squeezed the trigger! See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

9 May 1952 (USA)  »

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?


Despite all the iconic San Francisco location shots, no mention of the city's name is made. See more »


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 »


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 »


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


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

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Interesting Character Study/Crime Story
1 March 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

For much of this film noir, it was almost more of a character study than a crime movie, since there was very little action and only some suspense in the final 10 minutes. However, I'm not complaining. I found the film got better and better as it went along and was an interesting story overall with an excellent cast. When the action did occur- the sniper's shots - they were shocking scenes, shocking in their suddenness.

I appreciated the fact they shot this on the streets in San Francisco, where the story takes place, instead of some Hollywood back-lot. That city, in particular, with its steep streets and bay-windowed houses, is fun to look at in any era. This happens to be very early 1950s. As with many noirs, the photography was notable, too. I liked a number of the camera angles used in this movie.

I also appreciated that cast. Arthur Franz is excellent in the lead role of the tormented killer, "Eddie Miller." Eddie knows right from the start that he's a sick man, that he can't help himself and that he needs him. (So, why didn't he turn himself in?) It was fun to see an older and sans-mustached Adolphe Menjou as the police lieutenant, and Humphrey Bogart- lookalike Gerald Mohr as a police sergeant. It was most fun, being a film noir buff, to see Marie Windsor. This "queen of noir," unfortunately, didn't have that big a role in here.

What really struck were some bizarre scenes, things I have never seen in these crime movies on the '30s through '50s. For example, there was an investigation of sniper suspects held at the police building in which three suspects at a time were grilled - in front of about a hundred cops. The grilling was more like taunting and insult-throwing by this sadistic cop in charge, who made fun of each guy. Man, if they tried that today, there would lawsuits up the wazoo (so to speak).

Then there was this James Dean-type teen who was on top of a city building with a rifle, right in the middle of this citywide sniper scare. The cops bravely bring him in without killing him and are yelled at for doing so, since the gun wasn't in serviceable order. Duh! The cops were supposed to just see a guy waving a gun on top of a rooftop and let him go, no questions asked?

A number of things in here stretched credibility, but there were some intelligent aspects, too. "Dr. Richard Kent," played by Richard Kiely, was a case in point. He was the police psychologist and gave strong speeches (the film got a little preachy at times) advocating what should be done with sex-crime offenders, some of it Liberal and some of it Conservative in nature. He made some good points. "Eddie" had sex problems, I guess, but I don't remember it being discussed in the film. Maybe I missed that. The film did miss that aspect: Eddie's background, which triggered all the violence.

The second half of this film is far better, because the killings increase and the suspense starts to mount. As it goes on, we get more of a feel of what motivates Eddie as we see his reactions to people and how he views things they say. I was surprised, frankly, that he didn't shoot his nasty female boss, since he only harmed women. She was the nastiest woman in the film, and nothing happened to her. What was Eddie thinking?

32 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Where is a DVD for this... Wailmer1990
how does it end? kilmoonie-1
'prevention of sexually offensive criminology'? mooncaine-1
Ahead of its time richsass
THe Horrible Irony photoe
Discuss The Sniper (1952) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: