6.2/10
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Key Witness (1960)

Approved | | Drama, Mystery, Crime | 6 October 1960 (USA)
An average Los Angeles citizen witnesses a gang murder when he stops to use a telephone. Aware that he is the only witness against them, the gang members seek out his identity and terrorize... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Fred Morrow
...
Ann Morrow
...
William 'Cowboy' Tomkins
...
Muggles
Susan Harrison ...
Ruby
Johnny Nash ...
Apple
...
Magician
...
Det. Rafael Torno
Bruce Gordon ...
Arthur Robbins
Terry Burnham ...
Gloria Morrow
Dennis Holmes ...
Phil Morrow
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Hilda Haynes ...
Apple's Mother (unconfirmed)
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Storyline

An average Los Angeles citizen witnesses a gang murder when he stops to use a telephone. Aware that he is the only witness against them, the gang members seek out his identity and terrorize him and his family to keep him from testifying against them. Only by psychologically playing one gang member against the others is the man able to bring the police to his rescue. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Hear The Song Hit "Ruby Duby Doo" See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Crime

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 October 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Wölfe von Los Angeles  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is often considered to be the first neo-noir. See more »

Quotes

Magician: Who's on top?
Ruby: Until Cowboy gets back, I'm driving the car.
See more »

Soundtracks

Leatherjacket Cowboy
Written by Charles Wolcott
Performed by Charles Wolcott conducting the MGM Studio Orchestra
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User Reviews

Good acting trumps script defects in harrowing suspenser.
14 January 2006 | by See all my reviews

While it's true that the plot is frequently hampered by preposterous turns, this emerges as a genuinely harrowing thriller, largely owing to Jeffrey Hunter's conviction in the title role, as well as comely Patricia Crowley's interpretation as his panicked suburban wife.

It is to director Karlson's credit that he can take the improbable and still draw one in, such as the scene where Mr. Hunter's young son is shot by one of the thug's on the school playground--and one goes quite limp with horror.

And for all those doubting the veracity of witness retribution--try reading the daily newspapers.

However, Cinemasope is inappropriate for such an intimate story, and the cinematographer here is usually incapable of effectively composing for such a wide frame.

Look for Ted Knight in a bit as Dennis Hopper's defense attorney.


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