7.0/10
1,603
50 user 9 critic

Ransom! (1956)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 27 August 1956 (Sweden)
The Stannards' son is kidnapped for ransom. Plot centres around Ford's (the father) efforts to find him.

Director:

Alex Segal

Writers:

Cyril Hume (screenplay), Richard Maibaum (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Glenn Ford ... David G. 'Dave' Stannard
Donna Reed ... Edith Stannard
Leslie Nielsen ... Charlie Telfer
Juano Hernandez ... Jesse Chapman aka Uncle Jesse
Robert Keith ... Police Chief Jim Backett
Richard Gaines ... Langly
Mabel Albertson ... Mrs. Partridge
Alexander Scourby ... Dr. Paul Y. Gorman
Bobby Clark Bobby Clark ... Andy Stannard
Ainslie Pryor Ainslie Pryor ... Al Stannard
Lori March ... Elizabeth Stannard
Robert Burton ... Sheriff Jake Kessing
Juanita Moore ... Shirley Lorraine
Mary Alan Hokanson Mary Alan Hokanson ... Nurse
Robert Stevenson ... Fred Benson (as Robert Forrest)
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Storyline

When his son Andy is kidnapped and held for ransom, David Stannard liquidates his assets to meet the half-million dollar demand. A casual remark by newspaper reporter Charlie Telfer makes him change his mind. Despite the pleas from his wife Edith and brother Al, and the resultant condemnation of the press and public, Stannard goes on a nation-wide television program, displays the money and warns the kidnapper that not one cent will be paid for ransom; instead the money will be used to track down the kidnapper if Andy isn't returned unharmed. The police then find the boy's blood-stained shirt. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When That Phone Rings.


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 August 1956 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Fearful Decision See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,003,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,668,320

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,734,960
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The verse from the Bible Jesse says to Dave as he's holding him on the stairs is 2 Samuel 18:33. At the end of the film, Jesse recites Luke 15:24. See more »

Goofs

When Dave hugs his son out by the "fort" in the backyard, a shadow of the boom microphone can clearly be seen on the leaf-covered fence behind them, to the right. See more »

Quotes

Police Chief Jim Backett: You've seen it yourself. The biggest man in the country openly bartering with kidnappers, and the voting public wouldn't have it any other way, even though the kid were already dead from the start.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Taken out of the headlines----
28 February 2004 | by IshallwearpurpleSee all my reviews

This film was more or less taken from a famous midwest case of a boy kidnapped from a rich auto dealer's family in K. C., Mo. He was taken from a private school by a woman in a nurses uniform and the press in K. C. did hold off on the story until the ransom had been paid. The kidnappers were caught within 4 days, and the little boys body was found soon after. He had been killed the day he was kidnapped.

Now to the film. The point of the story is that it is 50-50 whether you get the victim back or not. Glenn Ford as the father who makes his decision to not pay but offer the whole ransom as a bounty on the kidnappers head, was very pertinent in 1956. There had been other cases like this, but the K.C. case was so brutal that it made headlines all over America for months.

As a woman who is old enough to have read about the case, and seen it on the new medium of TV for months, while it was going on, this film is heartbreaking and to me, almost perfect.

The mother and father and their anguish, the servants, who love the family, and the police and other people who interact with the family, and the company people, all are first rate. It is a slice of life as lived in an affluent mid-American family crisis, and all the principle actors are fine. The criticism I have read here does not stand up because the film is a thoughtful and serious look at a dilemma and not a flashy showcase for action fans. 9/10


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