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The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse (1938)

Approved | | Crime, Drama | 30 July 1938 (USA)
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A brilliant Park Avenue doctor becomes a criminal in order to do research into the criminal mind.

Director:

Anatole Litvak

Writers:

John Wexley (screen play), John Huston (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Edward G. Robinson ... Dr. Clitterhouse
Claire Trevor ... Jo Keller
Humphrey Bogart ... 'Rocks' Valentine
Allen Jenkins ... Okay
Donald Crisp ... Inspector Lane
Gale Page ... Nurse Randolph
Henry O'Neill ... Judge
John Litel ... Prosecuting Attorney
Thurston Hall ... Grant
Maxie Rosenbloom ... Butch
Bert Hanlon Bert Hanlon ... Pat
Curt Bois ... Rabbit
Ward Bond ... Tug
Vladimir Sokoloff ... Popus
Billy Wayne Billy Wayne ... Candy
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Storyline

Dr. Clitterhouse is fascinated with the working of the criminal mind. His interest is so deep that he finds the best way to observe criminals in action is to become one himself. Whilst robbing a safe at an exclusive party he stumbles across an organized gang trying to do the same thing. He teams up with the gang to observe them in action but one of the members, Rocks Valentine would like nothing better than to see Clitterhouse out of the way. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

. . . a thunderbolt of thrills and intrigue

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 July 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Amazing Doctor Clitterhouse See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ronald Reagan's voice can be heard as a radio announcer, a job that Reagan held before he started as a film actor. See more »

Goofs

At about 80 minutes into the film, the prosecutor cross examines the incomprehensible expert witness. In the first shot, the prosecutor unbuttons his jacket. In the next shot, he unbuttons it again. See more »

Quotes

Dr. T.S. Clitterhouse: [after shining a flashlight in Rock's eyes] Nothing to be afraid of - just an accident.
'Rocks' Valentine: [Angrily] Don't let no more accidents happen! I ain't no guy you can push around like these other dopes!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Bullets Over Hollywood (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

I Wanna Go Back to Bali
(1938) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played on the radio
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Whether He's Sane or Insane, Edward G. Robinson Is Terrific
26 March 2008 | by evanston_dadSee all my reviews

What a fun movie!

Edward G. Robinson plays a respected doctor who decides that the only way to truly understand criminal behavior for an academic study he is writing is to become a criminal himself. He joins a thieving ring run by Jo Keller (Claire Trevor, looking hotsy-totsy) and proceeds to both help the thieves with their crimes while at the same time studying them for the biological and psychological effects of their actions. Trouble arises when Jo's right-hand man, played by Humphrey Bogart, begins to feel like a third wheel, and blackmails Robinson when he discovers his true identity.

This film is a real treat. It's funny, creepy and suspenseful, all at the same time. Robinson begins to enjoy being a criminal, and his detached approach to crime makes him capable of committing murder without a second thought. Is he sane or insane? That's the question a jury must answer at the film's climax, and one the viewer still won't be able to answer after the movie's over.

Robinson, Trevor and Bogart have enough chemistry together to start a fire, and the three of them would team up again 10 years later for another terrific film, John Huston's "Key Largo." Anatole Litvak provides the fluid direction.

Grade: A-


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