6.9/10
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(1951)

Not Rated | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | March 1951 (USA)
In this Americanization of the 1931 German thriller, both the police and the criminal underworld stalk a mysterious killer who preys on small children.

Director:

Joseph Losey

Writers:

Norman Reilly Raine (screen play by), Leo Katcher (screen play by) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Wayne ... Martin W. Harrow
Howard Da Silva ... Inspector Carney
Martin Gabel ... Charlie Marshall
Luther Adler ... Dan Langley
Steve Brodie ... Police Lt. Becker
Raymond Burr ... Pottsy
Glenn Anders ... Riggert
Norman Lloyd ... Sutro
Walter Burke ... MacMahan
John Miljan ... Blind Baloon Vendor
Roy Engel ... Police Chief Regan
Janine Perreau ... The Last Little Girl
Leonard Bremen ... Lemke (as Lennie Bremen)
Benny Burt Benny Burt ... Jansen
Bernard Szold Bernard Szold ... Bradbury Bldg. Watchman
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Storyline

There is a baby killer loose and the police can't find him. He is a sick, psychotic and confused individual, though guilty. The increased police activity trying to find the baby killer is interfering with the mob's criminal activities. The gangsters are not pleased the intense police attention so the mob decides to find him themselves. The mob bosses send the mobsters out to find him. He is found and the young girl he grabbed is saved. A mock trial is conducted in the basement of a parking garage in front of mass of gangsters who captured him and citizens demanding blood. The baby criminal is defended by a lawyer provided by the mob boss. As the police show up, the mob boss shoots the lawyer defending the baby killer because he is doing too good of a job defending the baby killer. Both the mob boss and the baby killer are taken into custody by the police for justice. As the movie ends and the guilty are led out of the parking garage, we hear the spooky single tune played on a flute ... Written by Hal Wigoda

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

DARING! For the first time, the screen speaks of... See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

March 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

M le maudit See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Superior Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At 00:33 minutes, when the mobster is recruiting homeless men as lookouts, there are two signs on the alley wall behind him. The smaller, at upper left, reads: "Beware of Sneak Thieves". The large calligraphy reads: "When did you write to your mother last?". The latter was a popular choice for homeless missions of the day. See more »

Goofs

When the man puts the "M" on his palm, then transfers the mark to Harrow's back, then when we see the mark, it's not only way too sharp and bright for such a transfer, it's also about twice the size of the man's hand. See more »

Quotes

Inspector Carney: Ordinarily you look for a dame or a bankbook, get a victim with known enemies, what do we got? Some missing shoes. What're we looking for? A man with a twisted mind. Could be anybody.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Player (1992) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Underrated American Re-Make
14 April 2013 | by luna_the_cat-1See all my reviews

Wow. This is a really under-sung, but still great remake of M.

Like anyone else, I assumed this would be an inferior version of the Lang classic, but this movie stands alone and takes the already disturbing plot to a very '50's place.

If you're interested in noir, and you're seen the original M, you definitely, so much, HAVE to see this. The performance from David Wayne rivals Peter Lorre's and if nothing else, for you Americans, he is surprisingly sympathetic and relate-able.

The original M is one of the first great thrillers and bridges the gap between expressionism and what would become noir in film. This movie serves an exact opposite purpose - it takes the plot of "M" and does an amazing job of turning it in to a local film that both serves as a great thriller and a great commentary on our society.


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