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The Clay Pigeon (1949)

Jim Fletcher, waking up from a coma, finds he is to be given a court martial for treason and charged with informing on fellow inmates in a Japanese prison camp during WWII. Escaping from ... See full summary »

Director:

Richard Fleischer (as Richard O. Fleischer)

Writer:

Carl Foreman (story and screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bill Williams ... Jim Fletcher
Barbara Hale ... Martha Gregory
Richard Quine ... Ted Niles
Richard Loo ... Ken Tokoyama - aka The Weasel
Frank Fenton ... Lt. Cmdr. Prentice
Frank Wilcox ... Dr. Matson - Navy Hospital Doctor
Marya Marco Marya Marco ... Mrs. Helen Minoto (as Mary Marco)
Robert Bray ... Gunsel Blake
Martha Hyer ... Miss Harwick - Wheeler's Receptionist
Harold Landon Harold Landon ... Danny - Blind Veteran in Hospital
James Craven James Craven ... John D. Wheeler
Grandon Rhodes ... Naval Intelligence Agent Clark
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Storyline

Jim Fletcher, waking up from a coma, finds he is to be given a court martial for treason and charged with informing on fellow inmates in a Japanese prison camp during WWII. Escaping from the hospital he tries to clear himself by enlisting the aid of Martha Gregory, widow of a service buddy he was accused of informing on. Helped also by Ted Niles, a surviving fellow prisoner, he gets closer to finding the answers he needs, and becomes ensnared in a grandiose scheme involving his Japanese ex-prison guard, $10,000,000 of US currency forged by the Japanese and a burgeoning crime network poised to wreak havoc throughout southern California. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 October 1949 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Acusado a traición See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jim was held at the infamous Cabanatuan POW camp run by the Japanese Army on the island of Luzon. It's liberation by U.S. Army Rangers, Filipino Scouts and guerrillas is depicted in the film The Great Raid (2005). See more »

Goofs

While hiding out from his pursuers in an apartment, Jim notices a citation for a Distinguished Service Cross that states the sergeant was in the 442nd Infantry Division. It should read the 442nd Infantry Regiment (or the 442nd Regimental Combat Team). Made up mostly of Japanese-Americans, it fought in Europe and became the most-decorated regiment in U.S. Army history. The unit's exploits are dramatized in the film Go for Broke!. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Cmdr. Prentice: [after the bad guys have been captured] ... fortunately you've been of considerable service to the Treasury Department.
Jim Fletcher: I don't understand.
Lt. Cmdr. Prentice: Well, after Pearl Harbor, the Japanese expected to invade the West Coast. They printed one hundred million dollars worth of American money. Somehow, Tokoyama stumbled into a cache of part of this. Some ten million dollars. And, when he and Niles ran into each other in Japan after our forces came in, they went into business together.
Jim Fletcher: [astounded] Ten million ...
[...]
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User Reviews

 
A Film-Noir Based on a True Story
25 July 2018 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

When the Navy sailor Jim Fletcher (Bill Williams) awakes from a two-year coma in a hospital in San Diego, he overhears a conversation of his doctor and his nurse and learns that he will face a court martial, accused of treason for snitching fellow POWs that were stealing food in a Japanese camp in World War II. He decides to flee from the hospital and seek out his friend Mark Gregory to help him to clear his name. However he meets the widow Martha Gregory (Barbara Hale) and learns that Mark is dead. He calls his other friend Ted Niles (Richard Quine) that promises to help him, Jim needs to travel to Los Angeles to meet Ted. Martha is forced to help him and while driving her car to Los Angeles, two men in another car try to throw them off road. Martha convinces of his innocence and when they go to Chinatown, Jim sees the most brutal guard in the camp, Ken "The Weasel" Tokoyama (Richard Loo). Now he feels that The Weasel may be the means to find what really happened in the camp and he stumbles upon a huge conspiracy.

"The Clay Pigeon" is a film-noir based on a true story despite the flawed but pleasant and tense screenplay. The coincidences and the happy ending make the story hard to believe. The chemistry of Bill Williams and Barbara Hale is fantastic and the resemblance of Bill Williams with his son William Katt is amazing. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Alma em Sombras" ("Soul in Shadows")


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