IMDb > Underworld U.S.A. (1961)
Underworld U.S.A.
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Underworld U.S.A. (1961) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
7.5/10   1,446 votes »
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Director:
Writer:
Samuel Fuller (written by)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Underworld U.S.A. on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
13 May 1961 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
A Sensational Film That Puts the Finger On Today's Biggest Business... Crime! See more »
Plot:
Fourteen-year-old Tolly Devlin sees four hoods beat his father to death. Twenty years later, the killers... See more » | Full synopsis »
NewsDesk:
(6 articles)
User Reviews:
one of those finite definitions of a gritty B-noir, done just right See more (21 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Cliff Robertson ... 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
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Alan Aaronson ... Boy (uncredited)
James Bacon ... Newspaperman (uncredited)
Peter Brocco ... Vic Farrar (uncredited)
Donald Douglas ... Man (uncredited)
David Fresco ... Convict (uncredited)
Samuel Fuller ... Himself - Trailer Host (uncredited)
Donald Gamble ... Boy (uncredited)
Bernie Hamilton ... Investigator (uncredited)
Bob Hopkins ... Drunk (uncredited)
Tom London ... Drunk (uncredited)
Jerry Mann ... Cashier (uncredited)
William Meader ... Connors' Associate (uncredited)
Joni Beth Morris ... Jenny Menkin (uncredited)
Cosmo Sardo ... Connors' Associate (uncredited)
Rickie Sorensen ... Harry (uncredited)
Charles Sterrett ... Investigator (uncredited)
Audrey Swanson ... Mrs. Menkin (uncredited)

Directed by
Samuel Fuller 
 
Writing credits
Samuel Fuller (written by)

Joseph Dineen  Saturday Evening Post articles (uncredited)

Produced by
Samuel Fuller .... producer
 
Original Music by
Harry Sukman 
 
Cinematography by
Hal Mohr (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Jerome Thoms 
 
Art Direction by
Robert Peterson 
 
Set Decoration by
William F. Calvert  (as Bill Calvert)
 
Costume Design by
Bernice Pontrelli 
 
Makeup Department
Helen Hunt .... hair stylist
Ben Lane .... makeup supervisor
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Floyd Joyer .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Charles J. Rice .... recording supervisor
J.S. Westmoreland .... sound (as Josh Westmoreland)
 
Music Department
Jack Hayes .... orchestrator
Leo Shuken .... orchestrator
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
99 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Finnish censorship visa # 58211 delivered on 14-6-1974.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...See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in The Best of Film Noir (1999) (V)See more »
Soundtrack:
Auld Lang SyneSee more »

FAQ

Gun Used by Robertson---Did Cagney & Bogart Use the Same Gun?
See more »
6 out of 7 people found the following review useful.
one of those finite definitions of a gritty B-noir, done just right, 25 October 2006
Author: MisterWhiplash from United States

Writer/director Samuel Fuller is not personally attached to the material he presents in Underworld USA in the sense of it being autobiographical. But it is pretty likely, from listening to interviews with him and just from seeing his other work in the noir-esquire realm of motion pictures, that he knew at least the world these characters are in. Or at least he knows what kinds of emotions and what lies underneath certain aspects of lesser pulp fiction- and has a kind of journalistic sensibility that is all his own, telling it like it is from the mean streets of who-knows. It's got an assured eye working the gears, and it by-passes some usual clichés to get at some more interesting bits within some of the conventions. This is in the bones just a tale of revenge, but Fuller wants the little things and moments that make up such a tale, and how the characters can be more realized than might usually be. I liked, for example, early on when Tolly Devlin is 14 and makes a comment to his mother about something in the middle of their conversation- the mother doesn't say anything, but there's a quick, tight close-up of her face to catch the moment. It actually stuck with me longer than I expected, even as the main parts of the scene went along.

Another part that really, really impressed me was when Devlin (Cliff Robertson, not bad at all in a part that gets to stretch his skills somewhat), nearing the end of his prison term, and finally finds one of the men who beat his father to death when he saw when he was 14. The scene is very tense, but somehow very human too, as Tolly has to contend with a dying man that he has to kill with his own hands. Soon, Fuller gets the gears of the story going further, as he vows revenge against the others who committed the crime, making him pull an undercover act to infiltrate the mob to get close to them, particularly Earl Conners (Rober Emhardt, a plum role for him considering all of his TV parts). But he also falls for a woman, Cuddles, played by Dolores Day, and like Fuller's Crimson Kimono, the weight of the main thrust of what Tolly needs is balanced against what he could also have with his possible romantic interest, caught up in the emotional bog he's in.

I liked a lot how Robertson tapped well enough into the character to make him plausible, even sympathetic. He understands what Fuller is going for, a slightly more realistic- or more powerful kind of representation in the midst of the hard-boiled dialog and more complicated scenes- as he's playing a character who actually has a past, a childhood shown as shattered and made as the complete context that he has to contend with as an adult, despite women around him telling him otherwise. I still remember plenty of shots in the film too (not the gun-shots, the camera-work I mean), and this is after having seen the film months ago, and the driving musical score from Harry Sukman (a solid Fuller collaborator). That Fuller extracts a good deal of compelling entertainment out of a premise that seems pretty standard and even slight is remarkable, and ranks among the other fine superlative B-movies he was doing at the time.

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