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The Big Combo (1955)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 3,646 users  
Reviews: 59 user | 48 critic

A police lt. is ordered to stop investigating deadly crime boss Mr. Brown, because he hasn't been able to get any hard evidence against him. He then goes after Brown's girlfriend who despises him, for information instead.

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(as Joseph Lewis)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Police Lt. Leonard Diamond
...
...
Joe McClure
...
Susan Lowell
Robert Middleton ...
Police Capt. Peterson
...
Fante
...
Mingo
Helen Walker ...
Alicia Brown
Jay Adler ...
Detective Sam Hill
...
Nils Dreyer
...
Ralph Bettini
Helene Stanton ...
Rita
Roy Gordon ...
Audubon
...
Doctor (scenes deleted) (as Whit Bissel)
Steve Mitchell ...
Bennie Smith - Boxer
Edit

Storyline

Police Lt. Diamond is told to close his surveillance of suspected mob boss Mr. Brown because it's costing the department too much money with no results. Diamond makes one last attempt to uncover evidence against Brown by going to Brown's girlfriend, Susan Lowell. Written by Norman L Cook <cook@ssdgwy.mdc.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Most Startling Story The Screen Has Ever Dared Reveal!


Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

13 February 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Association criminelle  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The names 'Fante' and 'Mingo' were later used by writer-director Joss Whedon for two characters - twin brothers - that the Serenity crew meet in the movie Serenity (2005). See more »

Goofs

When John Hoyt as Dreyer reaches into his desk for a gun, the contents of the desk on the insert close-up do not match the contents on the master shot. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Brown: Joe, tell the man I'm gonna break him so fast, he won't have time to change his pants. Tell him the next time I see him, he'll be in the lobby of the hotel, crying like a baby and asking for a ten dollar loan. Tell him that. And tell him I don't break my word.
Leonard Diamond: You must have done something pretty fine to get as high as you are, Mr. Brown. I'm looking into that. I'm gonna open you up, and I'm gonna operate. I hate to think of what I'll find.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in I Love Lucy: The Star Upstairs (1955) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Syndicate Coup d'Etat
12 June 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Allied Artists which was Monogram Studios and mostly noted for the Bowery Boys gave us The Big Combo and they put together a stylish cast for this noir thriller. The cast is so good they cover up a lot of holes in the story.

The antagonists in this film are honest police lieutenant Cornel Wilde against ruthless syndicate chief Richard Conte. Wilde is doggedly determined to get Conte who's an article as slick as they come. His persistence reminds me a lot of Columbo without the humor.

Conte took over from a former syndicate chief who took a Johnny Torrio like 'retirement' to Sicily. Or what exactly is the real story there and who's this mysterious Alicia that throws a scare into the normally unflappable Conte?

Wilde also has a personal interest in another way as he's kind of crushing out on Jean Wallace who's Conte's main squeeze. There's a club stripper played by Carolyn Jones who's sweet on Wilde and pays for it with her life.

The Big Combo has made the list for cinema of gay interest because of the roles of Earl Holliman and Lee Van Cleef as a pair of gay trigger men who work for Conte. It's something that during the Fifties only a small studio like Allied Artists would have on screen. Today their relationship is rather obvious.

The parts are much greater than the whole and basically what Conte has done is pull a syndicate coup d'etat. But personally as the story unfolds he did a rather sloppy job in covering it up.

Rounding out the cast is syndicate banker Brian Donlevy and Wilde's police superior Robert Middleton. It's a nice noir thriller, but it should have had a much tighter story.


18 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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