6.7/10
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31 user 12 critic

Dial 1119 (1950)

Passed | | Film-Noir, Thriller | 3 November 1950 (USA)
Trailer
2:37 | Trailer
An escaped mental patient causes havoc.

Director:

Gerald Mayer

Writers:

John Monks Jr. (screen play by), Hugh King (from a story by) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Marshall Thompson ... Gunther Wyckoff
Virginia Field ... Freddy
Andrea King ... Helen
Sam Levene ... Dr. John Faron
Leon Ames ... Earl
Keefe Brasselle ... Skip
Richard Rober ... Captain Henry Keiver
James Bell ... Harrison D. Barnes
William Conrad ... Chuckles
Dick Simmons ... Television Announcer
Hal Baylor ... Lt. 'Whitey' Tallman (as Hal Fieberling)
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Storyline

A young mentally-ill killer, Gunther Wyckoff, escapes from a mental institution, murders a bus driver and, then, takes six hostages in a bar. The gun in Wyckoff's hand kills without emotion or pity, wielded by a man bare of emotion. It begins as a moral question whether an insane killer should or should not be sent to the electric chair, but goes elsewhere before it ends. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Killer on the Loose! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First feature film directed by Gerald Mayer, nephew of MGM head Louis B. Mayer. See more »

Goofs

On the directory of the Criminal Courts Building, the last two entries of "Quinman, R.A." and "Quimore, C." are out of alphabetical order with the rest. See more »

User Reviews

 
Brutally Uncompromising
5 March 2011 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Marshall Thompson broke new casting grounds in playing the criminally insane escaped mental patient in Dial 1119. This film was out of the B picture unit at MGM and was far more likely to have previously come from a studio like RKO or Columbia. MGM was one of the last big studios to put out a realistic type noir film like this one.

Time and circumstances get six people trapped in a bar in the fictitious Terminal City where Thompson after taking a weapon from a bus driver and killing him over it, he holds up in a bar. When the news comes over the bar television, Thompson shoots bartender William Conrad and holds the other customers which include Virginia Field, Andrea King, Leon Ames, Keefe Brasselle, and James Bell as hostages.

Thompson had been convicted once of murder, but was declared insane and given a life sentence at an asylum due to the work of psychiatrist Sam Levene. A fact that police captain Richard Rober won't let him forget. They have a lot to say to each other during the course of the film.

Dial 1119 moves at a pretty good pace and not a minute of its 75 minute running time is wasted. The lack of really big movie names no doubt helps create the realistic aura of the film.

Marshall Thompson usually played good guys and will ever be remembered as Daktari from the television show. I suspect he never got roles like this again because the public wouldn't accept him just like Tyrone Power in Nightmare Alley.

This film is brutally uncompromising on its view of the death penalty. Opponents of capital punishment will not be pleased, but Dial 1119 is still a great noir film.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

3 November 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dial 1119 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$473,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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