6.9/10
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36 user 10 critic

Split Second (1953)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 2 May 1953 (USA)
Two escaped killers take hostages and hide in a Nevada mining ghost town knowing that an atom bomb is scheduled to be tested there the next morning.

Director:

Dick Powell

Writers:

William Bowers (screen play), Irving Wallace (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Stephen McNally ... Sam Hurley
Alexis Smith ... Kay Garven
Jan Sterling ... Dorothy 'Dottie' Vail
Keith Andes ... Larry Fleming
Arthur Hunnicutt ... Asa Tremaine
Paul Kelly ... Bart Moore
Robert Paige ... Arthur Ashton
Richard Egan ... Dr. Neal Garven
Frank DeKova ... Dummy (as Frank de Kova)
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Storyline

Sam Hurley, "Nation's No. 1 killer" with a cold contempt for "heroes," escapes prison with two companions and takes a mixed bag of hostages to Nevada ghost town Lost Hope City. He knows they won't be found there because an atom-bomb test is planned for next morning! Relationships shift and tension builds as Hurley keeps the others in suspense as to whether he will let them escape before bomb time. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Suspense that screams... and screams... and screams... in this story of six people caught in a desert death trap... facing utter destruction! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 May 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Split Second See more »

Filming Locations:

Mojave Desert, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio 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

The escaped convict Bart Moore is played by Paul Kelly who himself spent 25 months during the late 1920s in California's San Quentin State Prison. He was convicted of manslaughter for the beating death of actor Ray Raymond, the first husband of actress Dorothy Mackaye, who was having an affair with Kelly and would later marry him. Kelly's next film after this one was Duffy of San Quentin (1954) where he plays the title role - the warden of the prison where he himself did time. See more »

Goofs

Considering the level of security around the test site, including the number of roadblocks set up to keep people away, how did Dr. Garven manage to drive into the ghost town seemingly unimpeded. See more »

Quotes

Larry Fleming: Where are you from, Dottie?
Dorothy 'Dottie' Vail: Pittsburgh.
Larry Fleming: You didn't like it?
Dorothy 'Dottie' Vail: I don't know. I never got a clear look at it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Skullduggery (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

The scene.
10 January 2004 | by manwithfingerSee all my reviews

My understanding of this motion picture is much different. My family owned the gas station and inn that appears in the picture. I have many memories of director Powell flying around in a rather unusual aircraft for the time, a helicopter. Being very young, I didn't have much interaction with the adults as they wanted to imbibe after the shootings for the day but I do recall having to be silent and not play in the front of the business. This is truly a unique story line for the early '50s. The cold war was in full swing so any movie about this subject captured audience attention. I have since purchased video tapes for members of my family. Excelent example of the A-Bomb era genre. Others: The Day The Earth Stood Still, Godzilla.


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