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Shield for Murder (1954)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | September 1954 (USA)
When a brutal police detective Lt. murders a bookmaker's runner for $25,000 in cash, a deaf mute sees him do it and now he finds he must kill again to cover his tracks.

Writers:

Richard Alan Simmons (screenplay), John C. Higgins (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Edmond O'Brien ... Barney Nolan
Marla English ... Patty Winters
John Agar ... Mark Brewster
Emile Meyer ... Capt. Gunnarson
Carolyn Jones ... Girl at Bar
Claude Akins ... Fat Michaels
Lawrence Ryle Lawrence Ryle ... Laddie O'Neil (as Larry Ryle)
Herb Butterfield ... Cabot (as Herbert Butterfield)
Hugh Sanders ... Packy Reed
William Schallert ... Assistant D.A.
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Storyline

A vicious cop kills a bookie's runner and steals $25,000 from the corpse. He then frames everyone in sight in order to keep the money to buy a new home for his would-be lounge singer girlfriend. Written by Ed Lorusso

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Dame-hungry killer-cop runs berserk! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

September 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shield for Murder See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Noland shows Patty the new model house, the sign out front says "Castle Heights Tract Homes". Castle Heights is an actual Los Angeles neighborhood where such homes were being built at the time. It is situated between Chevoit Hills, Beverlywood and the Santa Monica Freeway. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning of the film, when the police have been called to the scene of the shooting, a traveling shot of a responding police car shows a black and white car--no lettering saying "Police", or a city logo, or badge, or anything; just a plain black and white four-door sedan. However, when it pulls into the alley next to the crime scene and the driver gets out, the word "POLICE" in large black lettering can be seen on the door. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Capt. Gunnarson: [to police reporter] Write his story good.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Biography: Carolyn Jones: Morticia and More (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

 
'50s B noir
14 September 2009 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Edmond O'Brien has a "Shield for Murder" in this 1954 noir also starring Marla English, John Agar, and Carolyn Jones. O'Brien plays a bad cop - one review here said he was a good cop who gave into temptation. Not so. He was a bad cop, who had been suspected of trouble in the past but never caught.

In the beginning of the film, Barney (O'Brien), a detective, kills a bookie and steals the $25,000 that the victim is carrying. He claims that he killed in self defense, and his story is accepted. Then the fact that the bookie was carrying money, now missing, emerges. What Barney doesn't know at first is that there is a witness, a deaf and dumb man, who saw the whole thing.

Barney is a person of great interest to the bookie's boss, and also, a young man he helped bring up in the force (John Agar), his staunchist defender against criticism, is anxious to clear him. Barney, meanwhile, wants to purchase a dream house for him and his girlfriend (English) and get married. When he finds out about the witness, he needs to do some fast work.

O'Brien gives a very hard-edged performance. His character is completely unlikable. The very pretty Marla English unfortunately was unable to act. In one scene, however, Barney goes into a bar and meets a platinum blonde, who turns out to be actress Carolyn Jones, normally known for her stylish short black haircut.

Pretty brutal for the '50s. O'Brien elevates the material. Interesting noir, co-directed by Howard Koch and O'Brien.


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