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The Big Heat
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The Big Heat (1953) More at IMDbPro »

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The Big Heat -- A melodrama of dice, vice and corruption. Glenn Ford stars as a rogue homicide cop who takes the law into his own hands when he sets out to smash a vicious crime syndicate and in the process finds who planted the car bomb that killed his wife.
The Big Heat -- Trailer for this crime drama directed by Fritz Lang


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8.0/10   15,740 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Up 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Sydney Boehm (screenplay)
William P. McGivern (Saturday Evening Post serial)
View company contact information for The Big Heat on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
14 October 1953 (USA) See more »
A hard cop and a soft dame! See more »
Tough cop Dave Bannion takes on a politically powerful crime syndicate. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins See more »
(75 articles)
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User Reviews:
Big Hit See more (132 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Glenn Ford ... Det. Sgt. Dave Bannion

Gloria Grahame ... Debby Marsh

Jocelyn Brando ... Katie Bannion
Alexander Scourby ... Mike Lagana

Lee Marvin ... Vince Stone

Jeanette Nolan ... Bertha Duncan
Peter Whitney ... Tierney

Willis Bouchey ... Lt. Ted Wilks
Robert Burton ... Det. Gus Burke

Adam Williams ... Larry Gordon
Howard Wendell ... Police Commissioner Higgins

Chris Alcaide ... George Rose
Michael Granger ... Hugo
Dorothy Green ... Lucy Chapman

Carolyn Jones ... Doris
Ric Roman ... Baldy
Dan Seymour ... Mr. Atkins
Edith Evanson ... Selma Parker
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Phil Arnold ... Retreat Waiter (uncredited)
Linda Bennett ... Joyce Bannion (uncredited)
Charles Cane ... Police Guard Outside Lagana Home (uncredited)

Phil Chambers ... Hettrick (uncredited)
John Close ... Policeman (uncredited)
Sidney Clute ... Retreat Bartender (uncredited)
John Crawford ... Al - Bannion's Brother-in-Law (uncredited)

John Doucette ... Mark Reiner (uncredited)
Kathryn Eames ... Marge - Bannion's Sister-in-Law (uncredited)
Al Eben ... Harry Shoenstein (uncredited)
Douglas Evans ... Councilman Gillen (uncredited)
Fritz Ford ... Sailor (uncredited)
Jimmy Gray ... Man (uncredited)
Michael Jeffers ... Retreat Patron (uncredited)
Byron Kane ... Police Surgeon (uncredited)
Donald Kerr ... Cabby (uncredited)
Lyle Latell ... Moving Man (uncredited)
Harry Lauter ... Hank O'Connell (uncredited)
Nico Lek ... Canteen Patron (uncredited)

Celia Lovsky ... Lagana's Mother in Portrait (uncredited)
Herbert Lytton ... Martin (uncredited)
Mike Mahoney ... Dixon (uncredited)
Laura Mason ... B-Girl (uncredited)
Paul Maxey ... George Fuller (uncredited)
Joseph Mell ... Medical Examiner (uncredited)
John Merton ... Man (uncredited)
Patrick Miller ... Intern (uncredited)
William Murphy ... Reds (uncredited)
Ezelle Poule ... Mrs Tucker (uncredited)
Norma Randall ... Jill (uncredited)
Michael Ross ... Segal (uncredited)
Ted Stanhope ... Lagana's Butler (uncredited)

Robert Stevenson ... Bill Rutherford (uncredited)
William Vedder ... Janitor (uncredited)

Directed by
Fritz Lang 
Writing credits
Sydney Boehm (screenplay)

William P. McGivern (Saturday Evening Post serial)

Produced by
Robert Arthur .... producer
Original Music by
Henry Vars (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Charles Lang (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Charles Nelson 
Art Direction by
Robert Peterson 
Set Decoration by
William Kiernan 
Costume Design by
Jean Louis (gowns)
Makeup Department
Clay Campbell .... makeup artist
Helen Hunt .... hair styles
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Milton Feldman .... assistant director
Sound Department
George Cooper .... sound engineer
Music Department
Mischa Bakaleinikoff .... musical director
Daniele Amfitheatrof .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
George Duning .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Fred Karger .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Arthur Morton .... composer: title music (uncredited)
Hans J. Salter .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Ernst Toch .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
90 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Argentina:ATP | Australia:PG | Canada:G (Nova Scotia/Québec) | Finland:K-16 (1966) | Finland:(Banned) (1953) | Germany:BPjM Restricted | Germany:16 (nf) (re-rating) | Netherlands:18 (original rating) (1954) | Norway:16 | Portugal:M/12 | South Korea:15 | Spain:13 | Sweden:15 | UK:X (original rating) | UK:15 (tv rating) | UK:15 (video rating) (1988) (1991) (2006) | USA:Not Rated (DVD rating) | USA:Approved (PCA #16549) | USA:TV-14 (TV rating) | West Germany:18 (nf) (original rating)

Did You Know?

Bannion's wife Katie is played by Jocelyn Brando, older sister of Marlon Brando.See more »
Boom mic visible: When Dave Bannion brings Debbie some soup in their hotel and sits down with her, a double shadow of the boom microphone drops down onto the wall above them and waggles a bit.See more »
Debby Marsh:[to Mrs. Duncan about their almost identical fur coats] We're sisters under the mink.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Fisher King (1991)See more »
Put the Blame on MameSee more »


New York Opening Happened When?
Chicago Opening Happened When and Where?
See more »
9 out of 9 people found the following review useful.
Big Hit, 26 April 2006
Author: kenjha

Effective film noir about a cop fighting the mob as well as his own corrupt superiors as he investigates a murder. Ford has perhaps the best role of his career as the good cop. His scenes with wife Brando are very nicely handled, adding poignancy to the tragedy that would befall the family. There are shades of Dirty Harry as Ford takes matters into his own hands. Marvin and Grahame are also good as a mobster and his moll, respectively. Lang, a master of this sort of film-making, keeps things moving at a snappy pace. Some of the violence is jarring but of course nothing graphic is shown, given the era the movie was made in. After an excellent start, the second half of the film becomes somewhat routine but it still packs a punch.

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Stone's Penthouse pjfreels
good but overrated bcstoneb444
Giving up the gun HeroWithOneThousandFaces
Gloria Grahame nicknazareth
Scarlet Street is the Best Noir marhefka
Some of the best dialogue in a film noir...ever! jcremona
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