Robert Conrad and Don Stroud respectively play jewel thieves Allan Kuhn and Jack Murphy in "Tank" director Marvin J. Chomsky's "Murph the Surf," otherwise known as "Live a Little, Steal A Lot." These Miami playboys lived it up and behaved like daredevils. They made real-life history back in 1964 when they pulled off "Greatest Jewel Heist of the 20th Century," stealing 22 precious gems, among them the Star of India, the 100.32-carat de Long Ruby, and the 16.25-carat Eagle Diamond, from the J.P. Morgan jewel collection at New York's American Museum of Natural History. These guys almost got away with the perfect crime. Chomsky chronicles their early careers in Florida up to their biggest haul in New York. He relies on flashbacks to generate a modicum of suspense. One of the best scenes occurs when our thieves clean out a house and out run a cop. They make it to their power boat and the police in cars and boats try to nab them with no luck. This is a genuinely exciting race and the rooster's tail of water that Kuhn puts up as he eludes the authorities is spectacular. This proves to be the bonding moment of their career when they prove just how reckless that they really were as thieves. Murph picks up an attractive lady, Ginny Eaton (Donna Mills of "Play Misty for Me"), and she becomes his exclusive girlfriend until he dumps her after the Star of India heist. During one of the somber moments of their heist thriller, Ginny commits suicide with pills after Murph cuts her loose. The insensitive Kuhn calls Murph on the carpet for his cavalier attitude, and Murph defends himself, arguing that he never told the girl that he loved her. Eventually, the two guys wind up behind bars but Kuhn cries uncle and gives up the gems. Murph didn't believe that neither Kuhn nor he could be convicted on the basic lack of evidence. Kuhn took the deal because he knew where the stones were stashed. Amazingly enough, the actors resembled their real-life counterparts. Allan Kuhn and Jack Murphy are no longer behind bars. Kuhn served as the technical adviser on this above-average epic. Robert Conrad appears just as fit as he did during his "Wild Wild West" years. Stroud performs his own surfing stunts. The real Murph was a champion surfer. Chomsky and scenarist E. Arthur Kean have created an thoroughly entertaining chapter in criminal history.
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