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The Nickel Ride (1974)

PG | | Crime, Drama | 15 January 1975 (USA)
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Small-time criminal Cooper manages several warehouses in Los Angeles that the mob use to stash their stolen goods. Known as "the key man" for the key chain he always keeps on his person ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Cooper
Linda Haynes ...
Sarah
...
Paddie
...
Carl
...
Turner
Richard Evans ...
Bobby
Bart Burns ...
Elias
Lou Frizzell ...
Paulie
Mark Gordon ...
Tonozzi
Harvey Gold ...
Chester
...
Harry
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Storyline

Small-time criminal Cooper manages several warehouses in Los Angeles that the mob use to stash their stolen goods. Known as "the key man" for the key chain he always keeps on his person that can unlock all the warehouses, Cooper is assigned by the local syndicate to negotiate a deal for a new warehouse because the mob has run out of storage space. However, Cooper's superior Carl gets nervous and decides to have cocky cowboy button man Turner keep an eye on Cooper. Written by Woodyanders

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The action was his life... without it he was dead. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

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PG | See all certifications »
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15 January 1975 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El hombre clave  »

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2.35 : 1
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Selected by Quentin Tarantino for the First Quentin Tarantino Film Fest in Austin, Texas, 1996. See more »

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Anytime There's Music, You're My Song
Written by Michael Chain
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User Reviews

 
The Key Man
31 December 2011 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

If anyone thinks the criminal life is any kind of glamorous watching The Nickel Ride will disabuse anyone of such notions. Anyone who particularly wants to enter the life of crime.

Jason Miller stars in The Nickel Ride and he's known as the key man because of the ring of keys that are 24/7 in his possession. The keys unlock several abandoned warehouses that organized crime uses to stash whatever they've stolen in various heists until it can be fenced.

The syndicate is running out of said space and Miller is supposed to close a deal involving a whole block of these warehouses for such purposes. But for whatever reason Miller can't close the deal and his bosses such as John Hillerman are getting impatient.

Probably Miller ought to just retire, but organized crime has only one kind of retirement package and that he doesn't want.

Miller's predicament is something Richard Widmark's in Night And The City. He's not the ego-maniacal hustler that Widmark was in that classic, but he's made too many commitments he can't deliver. One was that a certain fighter he knows throw a bout where syndicate money is riding. Miller doesn't and a good friend of his, the manager of said fighter Lou Frizzel is killed. A harbinger of his own future that Miller doesn't like.

The Nickel Ride is a gritty and realistic film, as downbeat as Night In The City or The Asphalt Jungle, close but not quite in their league. One should also take note of a good performance by Bo Hopkins as the button man imported from Tulsa to do Miller in.

The Nickel Ride for some reason disappeared for years after its initial showing in theaters. Glad to see its finally out on DVD.


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