Dave Bannion is an upright cop on the trail of a vicious gang he suspects holds power over the police force. Bannion is tipped off after a colleague's suicide and his fellow officers' suspicious silence lead him to believe that they are on the gangsters' payroll. When a bomb meant for him kills his wife instead, Bannion becomes a furious force of vengeance and justice, aided along the way by the gangster's spurned girlfriend Debby. As Bannion and Debby fall further and further into the Gangland's insidious and brutal trap, they must use any means necessary (including murder) to get to the truth.Written by
Near the end of the film, Dave Bannion has an altercation with his brother-in-law's old army buddy in the stairwell. When he enters the apartment a second later, the sleeves of his suit are suddenly rolled up. See more »
[to Bertha Duncan]
That's the way you arranged it, didn't you, bright lady? You got it all put away someplace. That's how you kept Lagana over a barrel. But I'm not Lagana. With you dead, the big heat follows, the big heat for Lagana, for Stone, and for all the rest of the lice.
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Every character in THE BIG HEAT is fascinating. In fact, the script is so hot, I'd be surprised to see any director mess it up. Nonetheless, Fritz knows where to throw the spice (and the dolly moves). Not to mention, how to employ a younger Lee Marvin, who not only puts out a cigarette on a woman's hand but also dumps scalding hot coffee in her face. No, this ain't your mama's black and white. So grab the remote, a small glass of whiskey, and say with me on three:
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