7.7/10
11,671
103 user 91 critic

Pickup on South Street (1953)

A pickpocket unwittingly lifts a message destined for enemy agents and becomes a target for a Communist spy ring.

Director:

Samuel Fuller

Writers:

Samuel Fuller (screenplay), Dwight Taylor (story)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Richard Widmark ... Skip McCoy
Jean Peters ... Candy
Thelma Ritter ... Moe Williams
Murvyn Vye ... Police Captain Dan Tiger
Richard Kiley ... Joey
Willis Bouchey ... Zara (as Willis B. Bouchey)
Milburn Stone ... Detective Winoki
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Storyline

On a crowded subway, Skip McCoy picks the purse of Candy. Among his take, although he does not know it at the time, is a piece of top-secret microfilm that was being passed by Candy's consort, a Communist agent. Candy discovers the whereabouts of the film through Moe Williams, a police informer. She attempts to seduce McCoy to recover the film. She fails to get back the film and falls in love with him. The desperate agent exterminates Moe and savagely beats Candy. McCoy, now goaded into action, confronts the agent in a particularly brutal fight in a subway. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

How the law took a chance on a B-girl...and won! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 August 1953 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Blaze of Glory See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$780,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Shot in 20 days. See more »

Goofs

At one point, it's stated that McCoy is living on the west side. However, the Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan Bridge - on the East River - are visible at times out his window. See more »

Quotes

Skip McCoy: Pack up the pitch with the charge or drive me back to my shack.
Capt. Dan Tiger: I'll drive you back in a hearse if you don't get the kink out of your mouth!
See more »

Alternate Versions

When the movie was released in France, the French dubbing replaced the communists spying with drug dealing to avoid political controversy. No English print with subtitles went in circulation. The French title "Le port de la drogue" could be translated by "Pier of Drug". The original version was released several years after. See more »

Connections

Featured in Mirror for Our Dreams: Symbols and Conventions (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Again
(uncredited)
Music by Lionel Newman
[love theme for Candy and Skip]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Thelma Ritter kicks butt in Pickup on South Street
21 June 2001 | by banseSee all my reviews

Directed by Samuel Fuller, who also wrote the screenplay, Pickup on South Street is a tough, brutal, well made film about a pickpocket (Richard Widmark) who inadvertently aquires top-secret microfilm and becomes a target for espionage agents. Also involved are Jean Peters as a tough broad who is used as a courier by her evil ex-lover Richard Kiley. It's film-noir at its best and although the performances are very good its grand character actress Thelma Ritter who steals the movie. As Moe a weary street peddler selling neck ties (and who also sells information) she is terrific in a role that brought her another Oscar nomination. Its amazing that Miss Ritter was nominated six times for an Academy Award and she never won. This should have been the role that copped it for her!


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