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The Cross and the Switchblade (1970)

GP | | Biography, Crime, Drama | June 1970 (USA)
Crusading minister gets involved in the lives of members of a New York City street gang.

Director:

Don Murray

Writers:

Don Murray (screenplay), James Bonnet (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Pat Boone ... David Wilkerson
Erik Estrada ... Nicky Cruz
Jacqueline Giroux ... Rosa (as Jackie Giroux)
Jo-Ann Robinson Jo-Ann Robinson ... Little Bo
Dino DeFilippi Dino DeFilippi ... Israel
Don Blakely ... Abdullah
Gil Frazier Gil Frazier ... Big Cat
Don Lamond Don Lamond ... Sergeant Delano
Sam Capuano Sam Capuano ... Hector Gomez
Alex Colon ... Mingo
Hechter Ubarry Hechter Ubarry ... Moonlight (as Hector Mercado)
Stew Silver Stew Silver ... Augie
Dorothy James Dorothy James ... Graciela Gomez
David Connell David Connell ... Pusher
Michelle Galjour Michelle Galjour ... Angela
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Storyline

David Wilkerson is a relatively young parish priest in Philipsburg, Pennsylvania. With nominal funds, insufficient even to get a hotel room which forces him to sleep in his car, his church sends him to New York City to bring the word of God to the young men and youth of the Egyptian Kings, who are on trial for their violent gang activities. David hopes God will be their salvation. Although David is not allowed to get near the Egyptian Kings, his trip to the courthouse does garner much publicity. Because of that publicity, David meets a tough street youth named Little Bo, who offers to introduce David to the main gangs still out on the streets, namely the mixed white Mau Maus, and the predominantly black Bishops, who are fighting each other for territory. Who the gangs hate more than each other, however, are the authorities. David turns his attentions to the two gangs, and wants them to know that God loves them no matter who they are or what they do, and in doing so will guide them to ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They hated the preacher for what he said, but they couldn't erase his words. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

June 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La cruz y el puñal See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although the real life events that inspired the film happened in the 1950's, the movie seems to take place in the late 1960's. See more »

Goofs

The story takes place in the early-'50s, yet in one scene Big Cat references Medicaid, which wasn't established until 1965. See more »

Quotes

Little Bo: This turf belongs to the AAAGP. They don't rumble anyhow, they just freak out.
David Wilkerson: What's the AAAGP?
Little Bo: That's the 'American Association for the Advancement of Gangs and Pot'.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Clay Pigeon (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

Based on a true story
27 July 2004 | by alex2339See all my reviews

This movie is based on a true story and based on the original book with same title. Niki Cruz is a living testimony of what he went through before, during and after the events on this film. David Wilkerson received a vision that he would end up in the slums of New York reaching out to gangsters and the like with the Jesus message and thats exactly where he ended up. The movie tries to show exactly what occurred back that day as written in the book. Yet the film is rather watered down. The movie doesn't seem to carry an intense dialog so it may prove hard to win over audiences. It does have some weak scenes and looks as though it may have been due a poor budget. Don't forget though the movie is simply an illustration of what really went on so you would watch it to grab a picture of the real events. By watching it this way it would prove to be an inspiring film, watch it any other way and you'd fall asleep.


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