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Gangster Story (1959)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  December 1959 (USA)
4.5
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Ratings: 4.5/10 from 266 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 1 critic

Gangster and cop killer Jack Martin is on the run from the law, and hides out in a small town. Low on funds, he engineers a clever bank robbery that yields him a big bundle. Now he has not ... See full summary »

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Title: Gangster Story (1959)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Jack Martin
Carol Grace ...
Carol Logan, Librarian
Bruce MacFarlane ...
Earl J. Dawson
Garry Walberg ...
Adolph (as Gerrett Wallberg)
Raikin Ben-Ari ...
'Plumber' a Hood (as Raiken BenAri)
David Leonard ...
Bank President W. Palmer
John Albright ...
Henchman
Clegg Hoyt ...
Caretaker at Country Club (as Clegg Hoit)
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Storyline

Gangster and cop killer Jack Martin is on the run from the law, and hides out in a small town. Low on funds, he engineers a clever bank robbery that yields him a big bundle. Now he has not only the cops and the FBI after him, but also the local crime boss, who's outraged that an outsider can pull off a heist like that in his territory and not cut him in on it. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

December 1959 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$75,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Walter Matthau and his newlywed wife, co-star Carol Grace, were so broke by the time this film was made (mainly due to Matthau's gambling debts) that the couple had to pawn most of their wedding gifts just to afford to pay rent. They were so desperate financially that Matthau accepted the role of director and star for only $2,500. He later commented to the effect that it was the worst movie ever made, then adding, "Let me put it this way. It was the worst film I ever made. It was a poor script by a hack writer and a famous cardiovascular surgeon who produced the film with his brother who was a textile manufacturer from Philadelphia." He said the film "premiered at Loew's in Newark, and was so bad it never crossed the Hudson." See more »

Soundtracks

The Itch to Scratch
Music by Leonard Barr
Lyrics by Ronald Bloomberg
Sung by Ted Stanford
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User Reviews

 
No-budget, ragtag noir gem yields surprising results!
20 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of the more pleasing aspects of having a cable channel like TCM is the comforting knowledge that sooner or later so many wonderful quasi-obscure little film noir gems will eventually be broadcast and make their way into the home libraries of those who so ravenously covet them.

One such deliriously sublime example is GANGSTER STORY, a no-budget 1960 indie noir that starred and was directed by Walter Matthau. Produced in Los Angeles on virtually no money at all, it tells the simple but compelling story of criminal Jack Martin (Matthau) who, at the outset of the story has escaped his police captors and killed a cop in the process. His flight takes him to a quiet little town where he holes up while planning an outrageously weird bank job back in the big city. The heist nets him a bundle and now with the cops, the FBI and the outraged local crime kingpins (how dare this punk upstage them!) hot on his trail, the chase that will lead to Martin's ultimate destiny becomes hotter by the minute.

This is a tough one to recommend across the board, as there will no doubt be many who are put off by the obvious lack of resources devoted to the making of this picture. But connoisseurs of ragtag B crime noirs are likely to savor the abundance of eccentric touches that Matthau invests in this truly odd and surprisingly inventive thriller. Trivia freaks will enjoy knowing that Carol Grace, the actress who plays Matthau's love interest, became the real-life second Mrs. Matthau a couple of years later.


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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