6.9/10
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8 user 2 critic

Johnny Stool Pigeon (1949)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 20 April 1949 (USA)
US Treasury agent George Morton persuades convicted criminal Johnny Evans to help him destroy a drug smuggling ring in exchange for early parole.

Director:

William Castle

Writers:

Henry Jordan (story), Robert L. Richards (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Howard Duff ... George Morton
Shelley Winters ... Terry Stewart
Dan Duryea ... Johnny Evans
Tony Curtis ... Joey Hyatt (as Anthony Curtis)
John McIntire ... Nick Avery
Gar Moore Gar Moore ... Sam Harrison
Leif Erickson ... Pringle
Barry Kelley ... William McCandles
Hugh Reilly Hugh Reilly ... Charlie
Wally Maher Wally Maher ... T.H. Benson
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Storyline

In San Francisco, during the 1940s, US Treasury agents interrupt an illicit exchange between a sailor and a drug dealer. During the shootout, the sailor is killed but the drug dealer escapes. Later on,the agents pick up the trail of the fugitive drug dealer but arrive at his apartment too late. The dealer lays dead, permanently silenced by a hired hit-man. The only thing the agents have is an address book found on the dead drug dealer's body. Among the clues there is one that seems to be promising: the address of a shady Canadian trading company based in Vancouver. Treasury agent George Morton decides to visit a convict in Alcatraz and solicit his help in infiltrating the underworld. Morton knows that convincing the imprisoned criminal Johnny Evans to become a stool pigeon for the Feds won't be easy. But Evans is Morton's only hope to infiltrate the underworld and crack the case. Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Shocking Inside Story of the World's Blackest Racket! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 April 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Contraband See more »

Filming Locations:

San Francisco, California, USA 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?

Crazy Credits

[prologue] In their never-ending task of law enforcement, the officers of the Bureau of Narcotics and the Bureau of Customs of the United States Treasury fight many battles such as the one you are about to see. Their successes are a tribute to their skill, intelligence and courage. To their fearless officers we respectfully dedicate this picture. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Johnny Staccato: An Angry Young Man (1960) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Generally, a routine film about drug runners, though it ended very well.
3 June 2019 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

One of the more underrated actors of his day was Dan Duryea. He never became a household name but the actor had a great knack for playing all sorts of characters...some good, some pure evil and many in between. Here, you get a good chance to see him at his best. Along for the ride is Howard Duff, whose part is strictly by the book and not particularly interesting. Additionally, in one of his first films is Tony Curtis who plays a mute assassin of all things!

There is an international drug ring running from Mexico all the way to Vancouver. The federal authorities have some leads...but not much. So, to help them infiltrate this mob, George (Duff) arranges to have Johnny Evans (Duryea) released early from prison. The problem is George isn't very sure how far he can trust his new partner and they go undercover at a dude ranch outside of Tucsan, Arizona. Things get complicated when Johnny brings along a dame he feels sorry for (Shelley Winters), though having her along might easily jeopardize everything.

The film is mostly unremarkable but enjoyable. However, the movie really had a terrific ending--and this alone help elevate the movie above the ordinary. Well worth seeing.


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