7.3/10
1,292
33 user 13 critic

The Tall Target (1951)

Approved | | Adventure, Crime, Drama | 17 August 1951 (USA)
A New York City detective, traveling by train between New York and Baltimore, tries to foil an on-board plot to assassinate President-elect Abraham Lincoln before he reaches Baltimore to give a major pre-Inauguration speech in 1861.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Side Street (1950)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A struggling young father-to-be gives in to temptation and impulsively steals money from the office of a shady lawyer - with catastrophic consequences.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Farley Granger, Cathy O'Donnell, James Craig
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

After the Civil War, a highly decorated Shoshone Indian veteran plans to raise cattle in Wyoming but white farmers plan to grab fertile tribal lands by pitting the whites against the Indians.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Robert Taylor, Louis Calhern, Paula Raymond
Cornered (1945)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Canadian flyer Laurence Gerard finds that his wife has been murdered by a French collaborator. His quest for justice leads him to Switzerland and Argentina.

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Dick Powell, Walter Slezak, Micheline Cheirel
Desperate (1947)
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A young married couple flee both police and a gangster out for revenge.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Steve Brodie, Audrey Long, Raymond Burr
Raw Deal (1948)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Joe Sullivan has taken the rap for Rick who double-crosses him with a flawed escape plan and other means intended to get rid of him.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Claire Trevor, Marsha Hunt
History | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Robespierrre, a powerful figure in the French revolution, is desperately looking for his black book, a death list of those marked for the guillotine.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Robert Cummings, Richard Basehart, Richard Hart
The Furies (1950)
Drama | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A firebrand heiress clashes with her tyrannical father, a cattle rancher who fancies himself a Napoleon; but their relationship turns ugly only when he finds himself a new woman.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Wendell Corey, Walter Huston
Pitfall (1948)
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Insurance executive John Forbes falls for femme fatale Mona Stevens while her boyfriend is in jail and he suffers serious consequences as a result.

Director: André De Toth
Stars: Dick Powell, Lizabeth Scott, Jane Wyatt
The Tin Star (1957)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A cynical former sheriff turned bounty hunter helps a young, recently appointed acting sheriff with his advice, his experience and his gun.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Henry Fonda, Anthony Perkins, Betsy Palmer
Men in War (1957)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

During the Korean War, a battle-worn lieutenant and his platoon are behind enemy lines, and have orders to march to Hill 465 for possible relief.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Robert Ryan, Aldo Ray, Robert Keith
Scandal Sheet (1952)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The editor of an exploitation newspaper commits a murder and assigns his protégé to investigate hoping to divert attention away from himself.

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: John Derek, Donna Reed, Broderick Crawford
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

This film-noir piece, told in semi-documentary style, follows police on the hunt for a resourceful criminal who shoots and kills a cop.

Directors: Alfred L. Werker, Anthony Mann
Stars: Richard Basehart, Scott Brady, Roy Roberts
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Lt. Coulter
...
Stranger
...
...
Mrs. Charlotte Alsop
Edit

Storyline

The historical fact of a possible assassination attempt on the President-Elect Abraham Lincoln makes the movie very interesting. The drama comes from a fictitious New York police sergeant discovering the plot and boarding the last train to Washington, DC, to protect the new president to be. Dick Powell does a very good job using deduction and logic to find who on the train could be conspirators. He is foiled at different times but manages to succeed even when the conspirators have caught him. The movie's action takes place mostly on the train and the effects of travelling are well done. Historically, several states have already seceded from the union and that included Virginia. That's why Lincoln had to travel to Washington, DC, through Maryland, also a slave state. When he was taking his own "Inaugural Train" the plan was to kill Lincoln in Baltimore during a long stop but Lincoln's supporters did some slight of hand to sneak him on board the last train to the capital. Maybe not ... Written by Zack Rinderer

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 August 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Man on the Train  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$966,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This film bombed at the box office, resulting in a loss to MGM of $608,000 ($5.9M in 2017) according to studio records. See more »

Goofs

In spite of being set in 1861, there are electric lights hanging in the station and in other locations. See more »

Quotes

Rachel - Slave Maid: I'm afraid for him.
John Kennedy: You should be. Anyone who fires at Lincoln tomorrow won't last five minutes.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits S l o w l y roll up from the bottom of the screen, over a background of a train station. The word "TALL" is extra tall.. and the credits are followed by: Ninety years ago, a lonely traveler boarded the night train from New York to Washington DC and when he reached his destination, his passage had become a forgotten chapter in the history of the United States. This motion picture is a dramatization of that disputed journey. See more »

Soundtracks

Rally Round the Flag
(uncredited)
Music by William B. Bradbury
Arranged by Bronislau Kaper
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Intriguing and original movie about a plot(s) to assassinate Lincoln.
23 March 2008 | by See all my reviews

Movies mostly set in trains often work out extremely well. It's an enclosed and restrained environment, that creates a feeling of claustrophobia and tension but also with a lot of pace, since the train is always on the move. Just think about other movie examples set- or partly set on trains such as "North by Northwest", "Murder on the Orient Express", "Shanghai Express" and "From Russia with Love". This is a movie that deserves a spot on this list as well.

This is a rather intriguing and original movie concerning plots to assassinate Abraham Lincoln before or during his inauguration as the president. It's based on true fact. There really were several plots being brewed to assassinate Lincoln because of his outspoken opinion against slavery and because he mostly was seen as a friend of the north, among various other reasons. But of course the movie takes lots of liberties with the story, also because nobody really knows what happened really.

The story focuses on a New York police man who suspects that there is plot to kill Lincoln. Only problem for him is his superiors don't believe him and won't take him serious, which is reason for him to take matters into his own hands. Aboard the train to Baltimore, where Lincoln would pass through on his way to Washngton D.C. to be inaugurated, there is a lot of political talk aboard between Lincoln 'fans' and 'haters' and other various characters that act very suspicious. It makes this a good and interesting movie on several levels. It gives a good view into the time and minds of American people who lived in the 1860's and at the same time also gives the movie a tense mysterious/thriller story.

In 1951, action-movies were still non-existent so to speak but this movie at times show some early premises of the genre. It's mostly notable in its pace and toward the ending of the movie.

Interesting detail is that the main character in this movie is named John Kennedy. There always have been a surprising lot of similarities between Abraham Lincoln and the other assassinated US president John F. Kennedy, so the fact that the main character is named John Kennedy in a movie about Abraham Lincoln, 10 years before Kennedy became president is an odd coincidence to say the least. Also one of the plots, as described in this movie, to kill Lincoln in this movie show a surprising amount of similarities to how John F. Kennedy many years later got assassinated.

One of those movies that really deserves to be known better and needs to be seen be more.

8/10

http://bobafett1138.blogspot.com/


9 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 33 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page