6.8/10
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9 user 5 critic

The Undercover Man (1949)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 5 September 1949 (UK)
Treasury Department agent Frank Warren takes on the case of a mob leader who has evaded paying taxes on his ill-gotten gains.

Director:

Joseph H. Lewis

Writers:

Frank J. Wilson (article), Jack Rubin (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Glenn Ford ... Frank Warren
Nina Foch ... Judith Warren
James Whitmore ... George Pappas
Barry Kelley ... Attorney Edward J. O'Rourke
David Wolfe ... Stanley Weinburg
Frank Tweddell Frank Tweddell ... Inspector Herzog
Howard St. John ... Joseph S. Horan
John F. Hamilton John F. Hamilton ... Police Desk Sergeant Shannon
Leo Penn Leo Penn ... Sydney Gordon
Joan Lazer Joan Lazer ... Rosa Rocco
Esther Minciotti Esther Minciotti ... Maria Rocco
Angela Clarke ... Theresa Rocco
Anthony Caruso ... Salvatore Rocco
Robert Osterloh ... Emanuel 'Manny' Zanger
Kay Medford ... Gladys LaVerne
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Storyline

Treasury Department agent Frank Warren takes on the case of a mob leader who has evaded paying taxes on his ill-gotten gains.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Perhaps the Greatest of All Crime Stories See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

5 September 1949 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Chicago Story See more »

Filming Locations:

Kernville, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
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 James Whitmore. See more »

Quotes

Frank Warren: Do you know this man?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hoedown (1950) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Grandmother says"
4 May 2013 | by LeonLouisRicciSee all my reviews

There is a certain lack of style here that represented two of the Director's seminal Film-Noirs, Gun Crazy (1949) and The Big Combo (1955). But there are some very Noir things that make this more interesting than a standard Studio Crime Drama. There is one scene that you would never find in the "regular stuff". An Italian Grandmother is given an extended, importantly motivational scene, and speaks in her Native Italian. It is translated by her Grandchild in English as the G-Men look on with admiration and respect.

Such a long and laborious Scene, the Studios would say, is too Ethnic and taxing for the White-Bread target audience. But it turns the main Character around and is touching and unique. You gotta love Film-Noir. Another gripping, gritty scene is the murder of a potential Witness in front of the aforementioned 10 year old child and she looks on yelling Papa, Papa, Papa. Another powerful and offbeat scene.

One could quibble and nitpick at some of the corny stuff such as the Leader of the Mob constantly referred to as "The Big Fellow", that's just silly, and the dated text opening, frequently used, that touts the exploits of the Feds as just a bunch of regular Joe's doing their duty for the good of us all.

But this is a street level investigation that seems real and the Locations and the Characters are mostly Film-Noir and this one has enough strength to put it in good standing among, if not the best of, the Genre.


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