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11 user 1 critic

The Pay Off (1942)

The city's District Attorney is murdered, and a newspaper reporter investigates. He starts finding out that everything wasn't quite as cut and dried as it appeared to be.

Director:

Arthur Dreifuss

Writers:

Edward Dein (screenplay), Arthur Hoerl (original story)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Lee Tracy ... Brad McKay
Tom Brown ... Guy Norris
Tina Thayer ... Phyllis Walker
Evelyn Brent ... Alma Dorn
Jack La Rue ... John Angus
Ian Keith ... Inspector Thomas
Robert Middlemass ... Lester Norris
John Maxwell ... Moroni
John Sheehan ... Sergeant Brenen
Harry C. Bradley ... Dr. Steele (as Harry Bradley)
Forrest Taylor ... Hugh Walker
Pat Costello Pat Costello ... Pat - Reporter
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Storyline

Special prosecutor Lloyd Pearson has been murdered and there is strong evidence that gambler Moroni committed the crime, but he has an air-tight alibi, spending the evening with Brad McKay, star reporter of the Chronicle. Norris, the publisher, send Brad and his son, Guy Norris, to cover the story. Brad learns that Moroni did commit the murder, but has no way to prove it. Moroni tells Brad that the murdered prosecutor was getting a payoff, and was killed by his assistant Hugh Walker following a quarrel. John Angus, proprietor of the Hi Lo Club, tells Moroni that Brad suspects him. Phyllis Walker tells Brad that her father is in danger from Moroni. Hugh Walker has given her a key to the public locker where some money is hidden. That night, Brad finds Moroni dead. He realizes there is a higher-up that had Moroni kill Pearson, and then has had Moroni killed. He learns that Walker has been kidnapped, but secures the money from the locker and hides it in his apartment. He meets Alma Dorne ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HE'S BACK AGAIN... The Fastest talking newshawk in his greatest role! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 November 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Danaro e sangue See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
One for Lee's Legion of Fans!
8 March 2012 | by JohnHowardReidSee all my reviews

Lee Tracy fans rejoice! "The Payoff" (1944) is absolutely essential must viewing for Lee Tracy's legion of fans, so I'm giving it a "Recommended" tag even though it's only available on a very good VintageFilmBuff DVD which you'll need to track down. Admittedly, two of the support players, namely the diminutive but mysterious Tina Thayer (even IMDb can tell us very little about her) and the wonderful Evelyn Brent do get a bit of a look-in, but it's plainly a Lee Tracy vehicle specifically designed for Lee Tracy fans – and for Lee Tracy fans only. Lee has twice as many lines as all the rest of the cast put together and two hundred times more close-ups than Tom Brown. (If memory serves me correctly, Tom has one). True, the lines are third-rate compared to those hatched up for Tracy in "Blessed Event" (1932), but self-indulgent Lee makes the most of them anyway. Arthur Dreifuss is credited as the director here, but I can't for the life of me figure out what Arthur did. Tracy needed no coaching and he simply talks right into the camera. Maybe Dreifuss shot the 10% of the movie in which Tracy doesn't appear? If so, he didn't do a very good job.


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