6.4/10
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28 user 8 critic

The Dark Past (1948)

An escaped psychopathic killer who takes the family and neighbors of police psychologist hostage reveals a recurring nightmare to the doctor.

Director:

Rudolph Maté

Writers:

Malvin Wald (adaptation), Oscar Saul (adaptation) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
William Holden ... Al Walker
Nina Foch ... Betty
Lee J. Cobb ... Dr. Andrew Collins
Adele Jergens ... Laura Stevens
Stephen Dunne ... Owen Talbot
Lois Maxwell ... Ruth Collins
Berry Kroeger ... Mike
Steven Geray ... Prof. Fred Linder
Wilton Graff ... Frank Stevens
Robert Osterloh ... Pete
Kathryn Card Kathryn Card ... Nora
Robert Hyatt ... Bobby Collins (as Bobby Hyatt)
Ellen Corby ... Agnes
Charles Cane Charles Cane ... Sheriff
Robert B. Williams ... Williams
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Storyline

When a detective scoffs at his suggestion that an 18 year-old criminal be referred for psychiatric examination Dr. Andrew Collins, the police psychiatrist, tells him the story of his encounter with Al Walker. Walker had a history of violence and killed the prison warden during an escape. He and his gang took the Collins family and their friends hostage but when Dr. Collins learns that Walker has a violent recurring dream, he offers to help him decipher the dream and determine exactly what has driven him to a life of crime and violence. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

SENSATIONAL SUSPENSE DRAMA! (original print media ad - all caps)


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1949 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Blind Alley See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Film debut of Robert Osterloh. See more »

Quotes

Betty: [Referring to Stevens] How's the tough guy? Is he behaving?
Mike: He's talking business. He wants to make a deal. He thinks his life is worth money.
Betty: [Contemptuously] How much did he offer... two bucks?
See more »

Connections

Remake of Blind Alley (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Air
from Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major
by Johann Sebastian Bach
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Interesting film noir
23 July 2005 | by joweb57-1See all my reviews

Being a big Bill Holden fan since I was a young woman, I have seen this film many times. I think the psycololical breakdown of the lead character played by Holden was very well done with the usual laid back help from Lee J. Cobb as the psychiatrist being held captive. Cobb is intrigued by Holden's torment and tries to help him, even although he fights the help at first. The dream sequences shown when Holden relates them are well done for the time period of this film. It made a big impression on me when I was young. You have to see this film from a historical perspective, not by today's standards. It was made during a much simpler time.


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