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Underworld U.S.A. (1961)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 1,547 users  
Reviews: 21 user | 17 critic

Fourteen-year-old Tolly Devlin sees four hoods beat his father to death. Twenty years later, the killers have risen to the top of the crime syndicate and Tolly has a plan for revenge.

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Title: Underworld U.S.A. (1961)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Tolly Devlin
Dolores Dorn ...
Cuddles
Beatrice Kay ...
Sandy
Paul Dubov ...
Gela
Robert Emhardt ...
Earl Connors
Larry Gates ...
John Driscoll
Richard Rust ...
Gus Cottahee
Gerald Milton ...
Gunther
Allan Gruener ...
Smith
David Kent ...
Tolly - Aged 14
Tina Pine ...
Woman (as Tina Rome)
Sally Mills ...
Connie Fowler
Robert P. Lieb ...
Officer
Neyle Morrow ...
Barney
Henry Norell ...
Prison Dr. Meredeth
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Storyline

Fourteen-year-old Tolly Devlin sees four hoods beat his father to death. Twenty years later, the killers have risen to the top of the crime syndicate and Tolly has a plan for revenge. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Threat To a Nation! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 May 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alles auf eine Karte  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Hanging on the wall in Driscoll's office is a certificate bearing the symbol of the U.S. Army's First Infantry Division - the unit that Samuel Fuller served in during World War II and depicted in his 1980 film, The Big Red One (1980). The same typestyle for the infantry's numeral "1" is also featured in a reading-campaign poster in front of National Accounts, the gangster headquarters building. See more »

Quotes

Sandy: Why don't you take a good look at yourself. What do you see? A doctor? A scientist? A businessman? You see a scar-faced ex-con. A two-bit safecracker. A petty thief who don't know when he really made the big time. Where do you come off to blast her? No matter what she's been, what she's done. She's a giant! And you wanna know why? Well, I'll tell ya. Because she sees something in you worth saving. If only one tenth of one percent of all the good in her could rub off on you, you'd be a giant, ...
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Typewriter, the Rifle & the Movie Camera (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(uncredited)
Written by Robert Burns
Heard as a theme when Tolly's father's body is taken away; played by one of Sandy's dolls; also heard when Tolly's body is in the alleyway
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Lesser-known but iconic Sam Fuller
24 March 2008 | by (NY, NY) – See all my reviews

I had seen this movie only once before, and that was 20 years ago. A lot of the concerns of his masterpiece, "The Naked Kiss," are addressed in it. In some ways, it's more horrifying because it is about what it says it's about: the underworld and, more to the point, the USA. "The Naked Kiss" is, to me, a great movie and also a parable.

(As to Fuller's "best": In terms of polish, it's probably "Pickup on South Street." That movie has most of his eccentricities but uses major stars and is suspenseful and exciting.) Cliff Robertson does a fine job here as the single-minded man out to avenge his father's killing. Dolores Dorn is touching as the girl from the underworld with whom he becomes involved.

The supporting cast could scarcely be better. Paul Duboy is perfect as the slimy Gelo. Richard Rust is shockingly effective as the underworld henchman.

But Beatrice Kay is the standout. She plays the tough female who almost always appears in Fuller's films. (Thelma Ritter's Mo, in "Pickup on South Street, is the most poignant.) We believe that this gal is tough. We also believe that she has a soft side.

When I was too young to appreciate it, an older friend gave me a paperback book about actresses in b-movies, called "Dames." On the cover is a shot from this film: Dorn and Kay are leaning on each other. Kay looks tough as a guard dog and Dorn has bandages over one eye.

The movie is filled with Fuller's most important concerns: At one point, a rooftop swimming pool is pointed out. It is, one character tells another, for the fat cats -- and now and then for underprivileged children. The hypocrisy of some so-called charity is addressed here. So is Fuller's concern for the well-being of children.

I don't think this is out on DVD. You need to find it on VHS. It's absolutely a must.


5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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