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Shoot First (1953)

Rough Shoot (original title)
Approved | | Adventure, Crime, Thriller | 15 May 1953 (USA)
U.S. Army Lt. Colonel Robert Taine and his wife Cecily live in a village in England. While hunting on some land he has recently purchased, he shoots a load of buckshot at a man he thinks is... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Taine
Laurence Naismith ...
Blossom
Denis Lehrer ...
Reimann
Marius Goring ...
Hiart
Karel Stepanek ...
Diss
Powys Thomas ...
Ambulance Driver
...
Cecily
Robert Dickens ...
Tommy
Megs Jenkins ...
Mrs. Powell
Ellis Irving ...
Wharton
...
Magda
...
Hassingham
Cyril Raymond ...
Cartwright
...
Sandorski
Roland Culver ...
Randall
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Storyline

U.S. Army Lt. Colonel Robert Taine and his wife Cecily live in a village in England. While hunting on some land he has recently purchased, he shoots a load of buckshot at a man he thinks is a poacher but, upon examination, he discovers the man is dead and believes,at first, he has killed him. With the police and the Secret Service chasing him, he trails a suspect to London and this leads him to an espionage gang. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Plot Keywords:

based on novel | See All (1) »

Taglines:

RAW! RUGGED! RELENTLESS! (original ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

15 May 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Shoot First  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Hitchcockian pretensions
27 September 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Shoot First has the distinction of being the only non-western that Joel McCrea appeared in from 1946 until the end of his career. It was a bad mistake, worse than that when you consider the source is an Eric Ambler novel which usually translate well to the screen you have to scratch your head and wonder.

McCrea plays an army colonel stationed in the United Kingdom with wife Evelyn Keyes and they have a small country place where McCrea does occasional rabbit and grouse shooting. He shoots with a light load of buckshot some foreign speaking gentleman he catches on his land mistakes for a poacher. Later on he returns and finds him dead and hides the body.

After that McCrea and Keyes get involved in a web of spies and intrigue as McCrea realizes he's in a jackpot facing a possible murder charge.

This is where I have real problems with a film that has Hitchcockian pretensions. This is not Cary Grant an advertising man caught up with spies, this is a professional soldier. No way in the world could you make it believable that McCrea would act like this in his situation. The plot premise is just ridiculous.

One thing this British production has going for it is Patricia Laffan one of the sexiest women ever in British cinema. American audiences will know her best for playing Poppaea in Quo Vadis. She plays a foreign wife of a dissolute Englishman Frank Lawton who's involved with foreign agents. She's always a treat as is Herbert Lom as an exiled Polish count whom were never quite sure about.

But they are not enough to save this one.


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