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Panic in the Streets (1950)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 15 September 1950 (USA)
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2:12 | Trailer

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A doctor and a policeman in New Orleans have only 48 hours to locate a killer infected with pneumonic plague.

Director:

Elia Kazan

Writers:

Richard Murphy (screenplay), Daniel Fuchs (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Richard Widmark ... Lt. Cmdr. Clinton 'Clint' Reed M.D.
Paul Douglas ... Capt. Tom Warren
Barbara Bel Geddes ... Nancy Reed
Jack Palance ... Blackie (as Walter Jack Palance)
Zero Mostel ... Raymond Fitch
Dan Riss ... Neff - Newspaper Reporter
Tommy Cook ... Vince Poldi - Younger Brother
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Storyline

When a body is found in the New Orleans docks, it's pretty obvious that he died from gun shot wounds. The police surgeon notices that the man is also displaying other symptoms and Lt. Commander Clint Reed, a doctor with the U.S. Public Health Service, diagnoses a highly contagious disease, pneumonic plague. He tries to convince local officials to find everyone who may have been in contact with the dead man. The Mayor supports his efforts but many, including the police, are doubtful. Reed wants to avoid publicity so as not to panic the public. They have little information to go on - they don't know the dead man's identity - and Reed estimates they have 48 hours before disease begins to spread. With police Capt. Tom Warren going through the motions, Reed sets out to find the killers. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

WATCH OUT!! (original print ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Mandarin | Greek

Release Date:

15 September 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Outbreak See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,400,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox 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

Studio records note that only 12 of the 112 actors with speaking parts were brought in from Hollywood or New York. The rest were hired on location in New Orleans. See more »

Goofs

As Dr. Reed walks toward the house to thin the paint, and is informed he is wanted on the phone, he removes his gloves and tosses them to the ground. In the next cut, viewed from the house, he again removes his gloves, and tosses them on the ground. See more »

Quotes

Nancy Reed: If there's a plague here, you're the most important guy in this town.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The New People: Panic in the Sand (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

The Old Master Painter
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Haven Gillespie
Music by Beasley Smith
See more »

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User Reviews

Long forgotten Kazan Gem Has Contempory Message.
14 November 2001 | by densculSee all my reviews

I had forgotten this movie until I saw it again on the the satellite. You can feel, see and smell the New Orleans of 1950, thanks to Kazan, his cast and script. A few months ago, the fear and problem of a biological bomb would seem fictional. Today, not so. This movie is almost a precursor of today. We have dedicated men in law enforcement and the medical community trying to catch the carriers of the disease. They have to bend a few rules to catch them. The bad guys Jack Palance and Zero Mostel play off each other perfectly. The one domineering and evil, the other passive and pathetic. I like the movie because Richard Widmark and the police Captain played by Paul Douglas are portrayed as guys just getting by financially, but the most important guys in town while the bugs are loose. Great Movie.


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