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A Cry in the Night (1956)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 17 August 1956 (USA)
A deranged man kidnaps the nubile daughter of a police captain.

Director:

Frank Tuttle

Writers:

David Dortort (screenplay), Whit Masterson (novel)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Edmond O'Brien ... Capt. Dan Taggart
Brian Donlevy ... Capt. Ed Bates
Natalie Wood ... Elizabeth
Raymond Burr ... Harold Loftus
Richard Anderson ... Owen Clark
Irene Hervey ... Helen Taggart
Carol Veazie Carol Veazie ... Mrs. Mabel Loftus
Mary Lawrence Mary Lawrence ... Madge Taggart
Anthony Caruso ... Tony Chavez
George J. Lewis ... George Gerrity
Peter Hansen ... Dr. Frazee
Tina Carver ... Mrs. Marie Holzapple
Herb Vigran ... Jensen - Sergeant at Police Desk
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Storyline

Owen Marks, parked at Lovers' Loop with girlfriend Liz Taggart, surprises a peeping Tom, who knocks him out and kidnaps Liz. The police leap into action when they learn the victim is a cop's daughter. Kidnapper Harold Loftus, the unhinged product of a smothering mother, makes ineffectual advances toward Liz, who staves him off as the police close in, hindered as much as helped by her overprotective father Capt. Dan Taggart. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Eighteen, nice girl, nice home - How did she fall this far?... See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 August 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Cry in the Night See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Owen Clark is played by Richard Anderson, who would later star opposite Raymond Burr in the final season of "Perry Mason." See more »

Goofs

When Edmond O'Brien is getting ready to watch a movie on TV, he pours himself a glass of beer which is almost entirely foam. When he stands up to turn off the TV, the glass is suddenly full of beer. See more »

Quotes

Capt. Dan Taggart: I don't care about your coffee! Your son has kidnapped my child!
See more »

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User Reviews

 
great performance by Raymond Burr
11 September 2018 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

A brilliant performance by Raymond Burr as a mentally-challenged man who feels stifled by his mother makes "A Cry in the Night" a good watch. The film also stars Brian Donlevy and Edmund O'Brien.

Natalie Wood plays Elizabeth, the teenaged daughter of police Captain Taggart (O'Brien) involved with Owen (Anderson) - the two of them are together in a lovers' lane when Owen sees someone watching them. He gives chase and gets knocked out for his trouble. The voyeur, Harold Loftus (Burr) kidnaps Elizabeth.

Anyone who's watched the news or the ID channel knows that as kidnappings go, this was pretty benign. We also know a little bit more about how to handle a kidnapper - Elizabeth finally catches on and tries to befriend him. Meanwhile, her hot-tempered father is frantically looking for her and comes up against Harold's overprotective mother (Carol Veazie).

Burr is just the saddest character in this, it's heartbreaking. Natalie is very pretty and, as we have seen in other films, good at histrionics.

Since it was made in 1956, the film has a few questionable or politically incorrect moments, like when a fellow lovers' lane person hears Elizabeth screams and says, "Slap her again. They like it." And there's the subplot of Taggart's sister still unmarried because her brother broke them up - apparently she didn't care how lousy he was since he was breathing. And Elizabeth's mother tells her husband "not to scare away" the one Elizabeth has on the hook.

Schools today sometimes ban these politically incorrect films - ones that are much more blatant than this. I think it's a great idea for new generations to see them and understand how women were thought of and what was important to them - husbands.

See if for Burr's striking performance.


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