Legendary detective Mike Hammer has spent seven years in an alcoholic funk after the supposed death of his secretary, Velda. He is brought back to the land of the living by his old friendly enemy, police lieutenant Pat Chambers.
Jerry McKibbon is a tough, no nonsense reporter, mentoring special prosecutor John Conroy in routing out corrupt officials in the city, which may even include Conroy's own police detective father as a suspect.
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Hitchhiker Johnny McBride is badly hurt and loses his memory when the car he is riding in crashes. Two years later, a clue leads him to his old home town, where he finds he is a murder suspect. Johnny tries to discover the truth about the murder, while pursued by gangsters and several seductive women. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
I see by the credits that this gem of a noir was filmed by Franz Planer, who did many classics. I've seen most of the Mickey Spillane movies, and this one has the most distinctive photography. The director Victor Saville seems to have been a better producer than a director. he also had an affinity for Mickey Spillane; he produced nearly all the Mike Hammer movies in the 1950s.
The cast is outstanding; besides the great Anthony Quinn, there are several lovely girls, the best being Peggie Castle. Even the trampy woman at the beginning who gets a rude kiss-off from Quinn plays her small part to perfection.
The doctor who treats Quinn's hands at the beginning has a familiar face. I've seen him in many TV shows as well as movies.
It's impossible to make a bad movie when you have Charles Coburn and Gene Evans backing you up.
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