7.4/10
6,854
60 user 42 critic

The Front (1976)

In 1953, 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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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Phil Sussman
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Alfred Miller
...
Remak Ramsay ...
Francis X. Hennessey
Marvin Lichterman ...
Myer Prince
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Herbert Delaney
...
William 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:

What if there were a list? A list that said: Our finest actors weren't allowed to act. Our best writers weren't allowed to write. What would it be like if there were such a list. It would be like America in 1953. See more »

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

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Martin Ritt once said of this film: "Audiences go in expecting a Woody Allen comedy, and come out shattered." See more »

Goofs

Investigator Hennessey, as his name is spelled in the credits, is shown sitting at his desk on which there is a nameplate which reads Francis K. Hennessy. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Howard Prince: Fellas... I don't recognize the right of this committee to ask me these kind of questions. And furthermore, you can all go fuck yourselves.
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

Referenced in At the Movies: Episode #10.1 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Anything for a Laugh
Sung by Zero Mostel (uncredited)
Music by Carrie Hoffman
Lyrics by Ira Gassman
See more »

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User Reviews

My brief review of the film
22 April 2005 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

A fascinating film about blacklisting in the entertainment industry, the material does feel rather dry but the ideas are good and the quality of the acting pushes it through when nothing else does. Michael Murphy plays his character in a very human and realistic manner, and the performers are all round well suited, although Allen goes for comedy whereas everything else is in dramatic mode. The film is weighed down in fact by unevenness between comedy and drama throughout, however it is not entirely Allen's fault. Ritt's direction seems somewhat patchy with varying tones throughout. I definitely wouldn't call this a great film - or at least I can't say that I liked it a lot - but it still did have enough in it to keep me interested until the end.


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