15 user 1 critic

Violent Playground (1958)

Struggle between a Liverpool Juvenile Liaison officer and a young and dangerous pyromaniac.



(original screenplay)


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In Britain, a Manchester police inspector becomes obsessed with capturing a criminal who escapes from prison.

Director: Val Guest
Stars: Stanley Baker, John Crawford, Donald Pleasence
The Big Steal (1949)
Crime | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An army lieutenant accused of robbery pursues the real thief on a frantic chase through Mexico aided by the thief's fiancee.

Director: Don Siegel
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, William Bendix
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When their ship docks the crew disembark as usual to pick up their lives in postwar London. For one of them his petty smuggling turns more serious when he finds himself caught up with a robbery in the City.

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Bonar Colleano, Susan Shaw, Renée Asherson
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The Assistant DA falls for mysterious Thelma when she seeks help solving robberies of her aunt's estate. He is suspicious of her, but weakened as he is love-stuck.

Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Wendell Corey, Paul Kelly
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Violent fugitive and mistreated small boy team up to flee from authority.

Director: Charles Crichton
Stars: Dirk Bogarde, Jon Whiteley, Elizabeth Sellars
The Scapegoat (1959)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An English schoolteacher meets his lookalike, a French count; and unwillingly swaps identities with him.

Director: Robert Hamer
Stars: Alec Guinness, Bette Davis, Nicole Maurey
Certificate: M Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The Assassination Bureau has existed for decades (perhaps centuries) until Diana Rigg begins to investigate it. The high moral standing of the Bureau (only killing those who deserve it) is ... See full summary »

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Oliver Reed, Diana Rigg, Telly Savalas
The Blue Lamp (1950)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The daily routine of two London policemen is interrupted by a killer.

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Jack Warner, Dirk Bogarde, Jimmy Hanley
Villain (1971)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Murderous, sadistic London gang leader Vic Dakin, a mother-obsessed homosexual modeled on real-life gangster Ronnie Kray, is worried about potential stool pigeons that may bring down his ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Tuchner
Stars: Richard Burton, Ian McShane, Nigel Davenport
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Alec Graham is sentenced to death for the murder of his girlfriend Jennie, with whom he spent a weekend at the English country home of the parents of his friend Brian Stanford. Alec's ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Ann Todd, Leo McKern
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Tyrannical but ailing tycoon Charles Richmond becomes very fond of his attractive Italian nurse, Maria. The nurse, in turn, falls in love with Charles' ne'er-do-well nephew Anthony, who plots ways to gain control of his uncle's fortune.

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Gina Lollobrigida, Sean Connery, Ralph Richardson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A woman is murdered, but she is seen in different ways by different people.

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: Jean Kent, Dirk Bogarde, John McCallum


Cast overview, first billed only:
Anne Heywood ...
Johnnie Murphy
John Slater ...
Moultrie Kelsall ...
George A. Cooper ...
Brona Boland ...
Fergal Boland ...
Michael Chow ...
Sean Lynch ...
Bernice Swanson ...
Meg (as Benice Swanson)
Tommy (as Fred Fowell)


Struggle between a Liverpool Juvenile Liaison officer and a young and dangerous pyromaniac.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

teenager | rock music | See All (2) »


EVERY CITY HAS ITS DANGEROUS YOUTH. Stark, explosive drama - as the camera lays bare the heart of a big city and probe the secrets of its Violent Playground.


Drama | Crime


See all certifications »




Release Date:

7 March 1958 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Desperat ungdom  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75: 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Shot July-September 1957, copyright 1958. See more »


Despite its Liverpool setting not a single character speaks with a Merseyside (Liverpool) accent in the entire film. See more »


Referenced in Empire of the Censors (1995) See more »


Play Rough
Music by Philip Green (as Phil Green)
Lyrics by Paddy Roberts
Sung by Johnny Luck (Fontana Recording Artist) with Ken Jones and his Orchestra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

10 May 2002 | by (MELBOURNE AUSTRALIA) – See all my reviews

This movie pops up reasonably often on VERY late night TV in Australia on ABC TV (Not the american network).ABC tends to show very old British movies late at night, so I got to watch this one not too long ago.I quite liked it, it's certainly no worse than a lot of simular American films from around that time (Anything by American International for example). The locations and sets were good, Liverpool was an excellent choice for the movie.The fact that it was shot in black and white only enhances the mood and feel of this film. My only complaints about it are, I think that the romantic sub plot between the sargent and the older girl was tiresome and un necessary. The plot was strong enough without it, not to mention in real life, most policemen would be a lot more distant in the situation the good sargent found himself in. But hey. I'm not a policeman so it's only my opinion. My other complaint is that the title song was played throughout the movie ad-nauseum. It was ok for the intro, but after you heard it for the sixth or seventh time, it really started to get annoying. I can't help thinking that the movie was partially intended to be a promotional vehicle for whoever it was that sung it, the closing credits even mentioned that he/she was an artist with Fontana records. Obviously this ploy didn't work if that was the case. But the twins were absolutley gorgeous, especially Mary, it wouldn't have been as good without them. And David Maccallum was also very good as Johnny, happily he went onto much bigger things and deservedly so. It may seem a little dated now, not it's still an excellent movie, Well done!

15 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Violent Playground deagles
School location? howardkettle
Discuss Violent Playground (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: