Julia Ross secures employment, through a rather nosy employment agency, with a wealthy widow, Mrs. Hughes, and goes to live at her house. 2 days later, she awakens - in a different house, ... See full summary »
For a chance to look at Atlantic City in the Fifties before the casinos moved in The Burglar is the film for you. Dan Duryea stars in this small B film from Columbia as a professional burglar looking to make a big score with a necklace robbed from a fake spiritualist.
Duryea's team consists of Peter Capell jewelry expert, Mickey Shaughnessy muscle and hormones, and Jayne Mansfield who gives his hormones their exercise. Jayne's kind of a legacy for Duryea, if you can believe he thinks of her as kind of a kid sister. Duryea was raised by Jayne's father who was also a burglar and taught him the trade.
The robbery goes, but Duryea is spotted by cop Stewart Bradley who's on the take. So he has real police as well as this crooked one looking to get in on the score.
You'll note the similarities between The Burglar and The Asphalt Jungle. Both Duryea here and Sterling Hayden in the John Huston classic seem to be drawn inexorably to disaster. The difference is that Huston had that MGM shine to his film and this is a routine B film that's a cut above average.
Usually when a film is held up for a couple of years for release that spells problems. But The Burglar shot in 1955 and released in 1957 is moody and atmospheric and a nifty noir feature. Jayne Mansfield gets some competition in the sex pot department from Martha Vickers best remembered as Lauren Bacall's psychotic sister in The Big Sleep. She's working with Bradley who's working on Mansfield. All I can say is nice work if you can get it.
Around this time there was an attempt to make a lead of Dan Duryea, but he never really transitioned into that category. But The Burglar represents a fine bit of work from him and the rest of the cast.
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