IMDb > The Big Heat (1953)
The Big Heat
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

The Big Heat (1953) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 24 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
The Big Heat -- Trailer for this crime drama directed by Fritz Lang

Overview

User Rating:
8.0/10   14,018 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 28% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Sydney Boehm (screenplay)
William P. McGivern (Saturday Evening Post serial)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Big Heat on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
14 October 1953 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
A hard cop and a soft dame! See more »
Plot:
Tough cop Dave Bannion takes on a politically powerful crime syndicate. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
2 wins See more »
User Reviews:
Corruption See more (128 total) »

Cast

  (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:
Runtime:
90 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Certification:
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:Approved (PCA #16549) | West Germany:18 (nf) (original rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Actor Rex Reason was originally cast in this movie to portray Tierney or Detective Burke, but his agent was negotiating for him to play a bigger role in it, possibly that of Lee Marvin's villain, but since there was no agreement reached, Reason did not appear in the movie, even though some 1950s era books and magazines sources give him credit for this movie.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Bannion (Glenn Ford) fights with Larry Gordon (Adam Williams) in Gordon's hotel room, Gordon's revolver is first seen in the centre of the desk, behind Gordon. When Bannion picks-up the revolver, it is near the right-hand edge of the desk. This move is probably intentional - to allow Bannion to get the revolver without reaching behind Gordon.See more »
Quotes:
Debby Marsh:[leaving Bannion's hotel room] You really want me to go?
Dave Bannion:I wouldn't touch anything of Vince Stone's with a ten-foot pole.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Hollywood Remembers Lee Marvin (2000) (TV)See more »
Soundtrack:
Put the Blame on MameSee more »

FAQ

New York Opening Happened When?
Chicago Opening Happened When and Where?
See more »
9 out of 9 people found the following review useful.
Corruption, 27 April 2006
Author: krorie from Van Buren, Arkansas

Coming full cycle, Hollywood seems to be back on the theme of good cop vs. bad cops controlled by the mob. Recently "16 Blocks" successfully pitted honest Bruce Willis against dishonest city hall. For a time, with "The Big Easy" being an early example, this type movie presented the image of a totally corrupt government from top to bottom with omnipresent mob ties indicating cynical times, even the one good cop being tainted, just not as much as others. "The Big Heat" is a prime example of this type film in the early Cold War period, emphasizing the importance of one good man standing up against all odds, in particular unconcerned citizens who either themselves become tainted or who are simply apathetic as long as they are left alone. "The Big Heat" like "High Noon" showed that the good must take a stand or the entire house will come crumbling down with the rodents taking over.

Glenn Ford was never a versatile actor. In the right role he could carry the load sufficiently to get by. In the wrong role, his acting was amateurish. That he had potential is indicated by his performances in two movies, "Gilda" and "The Big Heat." Arguably, his role as Det. Sgt. Dave Bannion is the better of the two. Perhaps it is the inimitable director Fritz Lang that prods Ford on to realize his true talents. There is no doubt that Ford makes Sgt. Bannion come alive and puts real flesh on his bones. Ford is so good in this film and in "Gilda" that he deserved more recognition than he got from the Hollywood big wigs.

The two shining performances are given by Gloria Grahame and Lee Marvin who run away with the show. They provide one of the legendary scenes in film history that just about everyone has either seen or read about, when Vince Stone (Marvin)--note the last name of Stone--pitches a container of boiling coffee into Debby Marsh's (Grahame) face, scarring her for life. Vince Stone's demise is also memorable. The coffee sequence alone is worth the price of admission.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (128 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Big Heat (1953)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
The army buddies goyar
Giving up the gun HeroWithOneThousandFaces
The Dark Knight aarongleason
Some of the best dialogue in a film noir...ever! jcremona
The Best Noir Ever Msainy
Good ol' cliches (Spoilers) velvetkevorkian610
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The Professional: Golgo 13 Touch of Evil The Dark Knight Body Heat Machete
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Crime section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.