Johnny Damico botches a murder case and is suspended from the force. In reality, he is put undercover to identify the mysterious boss of the NY waterfront who has murdered everyone in his way. Will Johnny be next in line?
Based on actual cases from the San Francisco Police files, Lt. Guthrie and Inspector Grebb work as a team to track down criminals. In the last season Inspectors Delaney and Summers are ... See full summary »
In San Francisco, two police inspectors are on the case when a rogue taxi driver, with the help of a rogue porter, manages to steal the suitcase of an antiques collector before running down a cop, whose dying gesture is to shoot the cabbie dead. The inspectors discover that a statuette in the suitcase contains heroin. Meanwhile, a psychopathic gangster, his malignant mentor and their dipsomaniac driver have the job of picking up the other heroin shipments, hidden in the luggage of unsuspecting travelers. All goes well until they attempt to retrieve the heroin stuffed in a Japanese doll. A little girl and her lovely young mother have the doll, but when the crooks take possession of it, they find that the heroin has mysteriously vanished.Written by
Columbia Pictures hired Don Siegel, who had directed the pilot plus several episodes of The Lineup (1954) series, to direct the movie. Siegel wanted to throw out the police procedural parts of the story and concentrate entirely on the two hit men, played by Eli Wallach and Robert Keith. Columbia, however, insisted that the characters from the TV show had to appear in it, since fans of the popular show would be the main audience for the movie. See more »
In the scene where the passengers are disembarking the ship, Staples gives Dancer the address of the couple as "9020 Jackson." Dancer then relays it to his driver, McLain, as "2090 Jackson." McLain then drives to the correct house on 2090 Jackson Street, which was then being used as the headquarters of the California Historical Society. See more »
When you live outside the law, you have to eliminate dishonesty.
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I only saw this violent little thriller once, about 1977. Robert Keith and Eli Wallach are a pair of gangsters who have to pick up some narcotics that have been sneaked into the country. It is inside a doll. Keith, an old hand at criminal activity and violence, is the control man who keeps reassuring the volatile Wallach that if they get through the various delays and problems along the way, the mission will be accomplished and "It will all be over by" the hour when they leave town.
Of course nothing is easy, especially as Wallach's "Dancer" is such a sensitive, over-ready killing machine. Soon the number of unnecessary murders accumulate (a butler, a blackmailing hood). Also, the dangers of being a courier increase - the drugs are not all found, and Dancer decides to try to explain this to the wrong party. His typical reaction to the wrong party's reaction leads to the violence of the film's conclusion.
This was one of Don Siegel's first thrillers, and may be the leanest in terms of plotting. It is tightly filmed and remarkably effective, especially in the way the violence breeds more violence until it engulfs the last moments of the movie. It is not the squeamish, although not as bloody as other films, but it is for film noir fans.
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