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Roadblock (1951)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 17 September 1951 (USA)
Honest LA insurance detective Joe Peters becomes corrupt after falling in love with sensual gold-digger model Diane.

Director:

Harold Daniels

Writers:

Steve Fisher (screenplay), George Bricker (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles McGraw ... Joe Peters
Joan Dixon ... Diane Morley Peters
Lowell Gilmore ... Kendall Webb
Louis Jean Heydt ... Harry Miller
Milburn Stone ... Ray Evans
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Storyline

An L.A. insurance detective starts to get involved with a girl he is increasingly attracted to, even though he sees her as a chiseller. She makes it clear that her tastes are too expensive for him, so he sets about getting a lot of money quickly if illegally. Perhaps too late, she starts to find that she is content with him just the way he is. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HOT LEAD AND COLD CASH OUTSIDE THE LAW! (all caps) See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 September 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Walk a Crooked Mile See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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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

One of the first films to be shot in the Los Angeles River. See more »

Goofs

Miller tells Joe Peters he revealed himself as being associated with the robbery because Peters had said five men (plus the pilot) were involved at a time when that information was not known to the insurance company. Yet, immediately afterwards, Egan is cross-examining the pilot and mentioned the five men as though it was a fact, before the pilot actually admitted it. See more »

Quotes

Diane: Someday you're going to want something nice and expensive that you can't afford on a detective's salary.
Joe Peters: Like what?
Diane: Like me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits seem to be an early attempt at creative credits where the credits try to fit the blacktop of the road we're "traveling" on. See more »

Connections

Edited from High Sierra (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

So Swell of You
by Leona Davidson
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pretty good B noir
26 July 2009 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Charles McGraw and Joan Dixon face a "Roadblock" in this 1951 film also starring Milburn Stone of "Gunsmoke" fame and Lowell Gilmore. McGraw is Joe Peters, an insurance detective who meets a beautiful, sexy woman, Diane, while traveling home by airplane after a case. The whole airplane thing was interesting in itself - spouses could fly half-price, I guess (as the Dixon character claims she and Joe are married so she can do so - she didn't have to show ID either). And though it still happens, it's less common to board from outdoors today.

Joe falls hard for Diane, but she isn't interested - he's not in her league. She wants someone who will spend big money on her. One night, Joe sees her in a club where he's on an investigation, and she's with the biggest mobster in town, Kendall Webb (Gilmore). Eventually, Joe's and Diane's passion get the better of them. Webb warns Joe that Diane's enamored state of being in love with a poor man is just temporary - once the bloom is off, she'll go for the money again. Joe decides to go into partnership with Webb and steal $1.4 million that's scheduled to be on a train.

McGraw, who had a big career in television until a few years before his death in 1980, is a solid noir actor - tough and good-looking. The character of Diane, however, is the one to watch. Dixon, helped by the script, gives her many layers and leaves you wondering (though you do know the answer) - was she a big chiseler or did she really care?

"Roadblock" is good and interesting if implausible - Joe gets himself in deeper and deeper. It's hard to believe he would turn that dramatically that quickly. It's a minor point in a way because it's still an atmospheric noir.


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