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The Good Die Young (1954)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 510 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 9 critic

Three good men - a broken boxer, an American veteran trying to win back his mother-dominated wife, and an air force sergeant married to a faithless actress - are corrupted by Miles ... See full summary »

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Title: The Good Die Young (1954)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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René Ray ...
Angela Morgan (as Rene Ray)
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Margaret Leighton ...
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Freda Jackson ...
James Kenney ...
Dave, Angela's Brother
Susan Shaw ...
Doris, Girl in the Pub
Lee Patterson ...
Sandra Dorne ...
Leslie Dwyer ...
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Storyline

Three good men - a broken boxer, an American veteran trying to win back his mother-dominated wife, and an air force sergeant married to a faithless actress - are corrupted by Miles Ravenscourt, an amoral "gentleman." Because they need money, they let Miles lure them into his scheme to rob a postal van with a large cash cargo. Written by Mike Rogers <MICHAELPEM@aol.com>

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Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 November 1954 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Os Bons Morrem Cedo  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Piano Blues
(uncredited)
Music by Lambert Williamson
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User Reviews

Too melodramatic for the majority but has a good start and a strong final quarter
20 January 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Four men are in a car. They are all from different walks of life and a short time ago none of them were nothing more than drinking buddies – now they are on their way somewhere with a box full of guns. A washed up boxer, a man trying to win his wife back from a controlling mother, an RAF officer with a cheating wife and a "gentleman" with no means of his own. Only a few weeks ago, "gentleman" Miles finds himself out of luck with his women and his money pit in-laws and, needing money so, when he meets the other three men, he sees a chance to take advance of their various needs.

For a while back in the fifties, British cinema seemed to have enough grit and clout to it to almost be able to compete with the American market in regards crime thrillers (if not quite noirs); The Good Die Young is one of those that has a good try and is a pretty enjoyable piece even if it lacks the grit and tension of similar American products. The film opens with an intriguing set up but then jumps back to establish the story and characters and it is here where it becomes weak. The back stories are rather melodramatic and it doesn't fit well with what was meant to be a bit tougher and gripping; they are interesting enough to do the job but I must admit to feeling that they were a bit dragged out and unnecessarily long. However, if you make it through this main body of the film you'll get to an ending that is just what the film should have been throughout. I won't spoil it but it is enjoyably brutal, downbeat and gripping – "about time" was my thought when I realised that the film had gotten going.

The cast do their best with the melodrama but the material isn't there for them and they are mixed. Harvey and Baker stand out with strong performances; Basehart is good but Ireland feels like he is just making up the numbers. Naturally Collins stands out today, and she is quite good but the melodrama is made better by Grahame, Ray and, to a lesser extent, Leighton. Of course the men are all much better in the proper crime side of the film and this is partly due to better and more atmospheric direction from writer/director Gilbert, who also injects the pace when it is required.

Overall this is an average film mainly because the back story takes up far too much of the film, is too melodramatic and doesn't sit well with the tough tension promised in the first scene and delivered at the end. With the main trunk being rather plodding, the ending does feel a lot better mainly because you're grateful that the film has gotten going. Could have been great but is merely reasonably good; worth seeing for genre and period fans but will not impress a wider audience.


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