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The Light Touch (1951)

Approved | | Crime , Drama | 6 December 1951 (USA)
After a professional art thief steals a religious painting from an Italian museum, he tries to cheat his partner by claiming the painting was accidentally destroyed but his suspicious partner and the police are determined to find it.


Richard Brooks


Richard Brooks, Jed Harris (story) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Stewart Granger ... Sam Conride
Pier Angeli ... Anna Vasarri
George Sanders ... Felix Guignol
Kurt Kasznar ... Mr. Aramescu
Joseph Calleia ... Lt. Massiro
Larry Keating ... Mr. R.F. Hawkley
Rhys Williams ... Mr. MacWade
Norman Lloyd ... Anton
Mike Mazurki ... Charles
Ben Astar ... Hamadi Mahmoud (as Albert Benastar)


Sam and Felix are art thieves. Sam has just stolen a picture from a museum in Italy, but told Felix that it was lost in a boat accident. He wants copies made to sell while he will sell the original and get paid both ways. To find an artist, they pick the young, beautiful, naive Anna. When Anna has doubts, Sam strings her along and then marries her and go to Sicily on their honeymoon. Anna finds out that Sam is a thief and is very disappointed. Felix finds out that Sam has the original and is out to get it. The police are also waiting along with the buyer that Sam has for the painting. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


If she knew what he was, she'd never given him her youth and innocence!


Crime | Drama


Approved | See all certifications »



USA | Italy


English | Italian | French

Release Date:

6 December 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Crown of Thorns See more »


Box Office


$1,163,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$438,000, 31 December 1951

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,281,000, 31 December 1951
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Stewart Granger later wrote in his memoirs he had to make the film or go on suspension: "I wasn't particularly enamored of the thought of working with [Richard Brooks], as I had heard he had reduced a small-part actor to tears. That actor was Ramon Novarro. The thought of anyone reducing one of my childhood heroes to tears filled me with anger, but that's Hollywood. When a star is down he's fair game for anyone. I had to agree in order to avoid suspension and went along to meet Brooks. His opening words [were], 'I have to tell you that I wanted Cary Grant' . . . [introducing leading lady Pier Angeli] '[She will] play opposite you. Doesn't speak very good English but we'll get around that'. I spoke very good English but wondered how the hell I would get around his dialogue". See more »


Felix Guignol: A man has to believe in something, even if it's nothing.
See more »

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User Reviews

Rarely seen -- and now we know why
4 July 2002 | by Jim TrittenSee all my reviews

This could have been a reasonably good picture. Plot is fairly decent and location shooting is an added dimension. It is writer/director Richard Brooks second attempt at direction -- he got better. Stewart Granger has been better. The age difference between Grander and the young and naive Pier Angeli is simply too great and does not work like it did with Gary Cooper and Audrey Hepburn in "Love in the Afternoon." Kurt Kasznar is probably working as hard as he could in his first film since appearing as an uncredited child star, but I could have seen Sydney Greenstreet in his role instead (had that legendary actor not been done with films). I liked George Sanders -- but I ususally like him in almost anything. He is the one saving grace to the film. Joseph Calleia does a good job but see him instead as Sgt. Pete Menzies in "Touch of Evil." Same with Mike Mazurki -- see him as "the" Moose Malloy in "Murder My Sweet" instead. "E" web site says the film is not available on tape or DVD and does not provide you an opportunity to vote for it. Not much to recommend.

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