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The Big Bluff (1955)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 5 June 1955 (USA)
When a scheming fortune hunter finds his rich wife is not going to die as expected, he and his lover make other plans to get her millions.

Director:

W. Lee Wilder

Writers:

Fred Freiberger (screenplay), Mindret Lord (story) (as Mindred Lord)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Bromfield ... Ricardo De Villa
Martha Vickers ... Valerie Bancroft
Robert Hutton ... Dr. Peter Kirk
Rosemarie Stack ... Fritzie Darvel (as Rosemarie Bowe)
Eve Miller ... Marsha Jordan
Max Palmer Max Palmer ... Fullmer
Eddie Bee Eddie Bee ... Don Darvel
Robert Bice ... Dr. Harrison
Pierre Watkin ... Winthrop
Beal Wong Beal Wong ... Art Dealer
Rusty Wescoatt Rusty Wescoatt ... Frank
Mitchell Kowall ... Coroner
Jack Daly Jack Daly ... Master of Ceremonies
Paul McGuire Paul McGuire ... Butler
George Conrad ... Bell Boy
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Storyline

When scheming fortune hunter and erstwhile Latin lover Ricardo De Villa learns that a wealthy but sickly widow has terminal heart disease, he seduces and marries the vulnerable millionairess. Playing the part of a faithful and doting husband, he carries on a torrid affair with sexy exotic dancer Fritzi Darvel while avoiding the suspicious eyes of her jealous bongo-playing husband. When his wife's condition seems to go into remission, the impatient De Villa decides on action that will hasten her seemingly inevitable death. Written by duke1029

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 June 1955 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Worthy Deceivers See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Planet Filmplays See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

In a case of life mirroring art, Martha Vickers (Valerie) passed away at age 46 before the other main members of the cast. Unlike the heart disease her character had in the film, she suffered from esophageal cancer. Of the remainder of the main cast, Rosemarie Stack (Marsha) lived the longest, to age 86, passing away in January 2019. See more »

Quotes

Fritzi Darvel: Oh, so that's it! I had an idea you were playing up to that dame!
[She slaps him hard]
Fritzi Darvel: You two-timing, no good... And on top of it, you don't even try to hide it! Carrying on an affair with another woman right under my nose! Why, you're not going to do it, and what's more, I think you're a phony! And I was ready to leave my husband! For what? For a big bluff like you!
[She succumbs to his persistant, passionate kiss]
Ricardo 'Rick' De Villa: You know you're very beautiful when you get mad! But listen, no other woman ...
See more »

Connections

Remake of The Glass Alibi (1946) See more »

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User Reviews

Has Its Moments
31 October 2015 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

Not a bad programmer, nothing new in the con-man department, but with a nifty ironical ending. Con-man Ricardo (Bromfield) romances wealthy heiress Valerie (Vickers) who has a heart condition. Marrying her, he then plots ways of shortening her life. Trouble is Valerie's friend Marsha (Miller) suspects his motives and enlists Dr. Kirk (Hutton) to help track Ricardo who's also keeping company with Fritzie (Bowe) despite her husband. Thankfully, the complications come together at story's end.

Bromfield, looking a little like Clark Gable, knows how to use a cigarette to suggest character traits. He's just slick enough to be persuasive. The ordinarily shrewish Vickers goes against type, her Valerie being a sweet-natured victim; at the same time, little-known Eve Miller shows why she should be better known. And get a load of Rosemarie Bowe (Fritzie) who's got enough steamy allure to melt a polar ice cap.

Oh sure, the overall result doesn't rise above programmer level, but it's done well for a cheap indie. Too bad, however, that director Wilder doesn't or can't invest the filming with more style that would lift the visuals. And, on a niggling note-- this isn't really noir. Specifically, the film's missing such defining features as expressionist lighting, plus a morally ambiguous central character. Ricardo's wicked, but crucially he's not torn between ethical poles. In my book, the results count more properly as a crime drama.


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