A cashier poses as a writer for blacklisted talents to submit their work through, but the injustice around him pushes him to take a stand.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Phil Sussman
...
Alfred Miller
...
Remak Ramsay ...
Hennessey
Marvin Lichterman ...
Myer Prince
Lloyd Gough ...
Delaney
...
Phelps
Joshua Shelley ...
Sam
Norman Rose ...
Howard's Attorney
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Committee Counselor
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Committee Chairman (as M. Josef Sommer)
...
Danny LaGattuta
...
T. V. Interviewer
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Storyline

In the early 1950s Howard Prince, who works in a restaurant, helps out a black-listed writer friend by selling a TV station a script under his own name. The money is useful in paying off gambling debts, so he takes on three more such clients. Howard is politically pretty innocent, but involvement with Florence - who quits TV in disgust over things - and friendship with the show's ex-star - now himself blacklisted - make him start to think about what is really going on. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

America's Most Unlikely Hero.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

January 1977 (Austria)  »

Also Known As:

El testaferro  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the "Every Woody Allen Movie" website, the later 2009 Woody Allen film Whatever Works (2009) was originally conceived and started being written around the time of this picture and was originally designed as being a vehicle for Zero Mostel, Allen's co-star in The Front (1976). See more »

Goofs

When Howard and Florence kiss in the park , the Bi-Level George Washington Bridge can be seen in the background. In 1952 when this movie takes place, the bridge only had 1 level. See more »

Quotes

Howard Prince: [to Sam] I - I still don't see why we can't fix it. You know what I me...? Pay somebody off 'cau - 'cause how much cou-could it cost, you know, 'cause they're just Congressmen?
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the credits the people involved with the movie who were blacklisted are listed along with the year they were blacklisted. See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood contra Franco (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Daisy Bell
(uncredited)
Written by Harry Dacre
[played during Old Gold commercial]
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User Reviews

 
Excellent
18 September 2005 | by (Boston, MA) – See all my reviews

Martin Ritt's and Walter Bernstein's excellent and very entertaining revenge film! Woody Allen is a bookie/restaurant cashier who, in order to help out a blacklisted writer-friend, agrees to front for him. Previously oblivious to the horrors of the blacklist, Allen soon realizes that people are not only unable to work, but are literally being destroyed. Director Ritt and screenwriter Bernstein, both victims of the '50s communist witch-hunt, exact their revenge by creating a character who, for all intent and purposes, is an everyman --- one capable of telling the government to go "F" itself! The large cast --- some of whom were also blacklisted --- is splendid. Herschel Bernardi, Lloyd Gough, Michael Murphy, and, best of a ll, Zero Mostel offer great support and Allen, in a rare acting only role, manages to give what is arguably his best screen performance. He brings his humor --- it's hard to believe some his dialogue, particularly in his scenes with leading lady Andrea Marcovicci --- isn't ad libbed, but also creates his deepest characterization. He's especially powerful when he attends the funeral of a blacklisted friend.


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