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The Big Night (1951)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | 7 December 1951 (USA)
A teenager comes of age while seeking revenge on the man who beat up his father.

Director:

Joseph Losey

Writers:

Stanley Ellin (novel), Joseph Losey (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Drew Barrymore ... George La Main (as John Barrymore Jr.)
Preston Foster ... Andy La Main
Joan Lorring ... Marion Rostina
Howard St. John ... Al Judge
Dorothy Comingore ... Julie Rostina
Philip Bourneuf ... Dr. Lloyd Cooper
Howland Chamberlain ... Flanagan (as Howland Chamberlin)
Myron Healey ... Kennealy
Emile Meyer ... Peckinpaugh (as Emil Meyer)
Mauri Leighton ... Terry Angelus (as Mauri Lynn)
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Storyline

George La Main, just turned 17, suffers growing pains and is anxious to prove his manhood. That night, George's adored father Andy is savagely beaten by sportswriter Al Judge. Traumatized and unable to learn why it happened, George goes gunning for Judge. His mission becomes an odyssey through the town's seamy side, and his coming of age is more of a trial by fire than he bargained for. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

whiskey | poker | metaxa | cognac | beer | See All (36) »

Taglines:

GRIPPING! Under cover of darkness a kid learns about life!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 December 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Big Night See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer gets an unusually high amount of product placement visibility in this one. See more »

Goofs

When the man at the boxing match offers George a slug of whiskey, a close-up shows him holding the bottle with the front label facing the camera, but in the next mid-shot, the back label is suddenly facing forward. See more »

Quotes

George La Main: Were you laughing at me? Were you still thinking I was wet behind the ears and smelled of milk? Were ya?
See more »

Soundtracks

Am I Too Young
Music by Lyn Murray
Lyrics by Sid Kuller
Sung by Mauri Leighton (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE...!
21 January 2020 | by masonfiskSee all my reviews

Joseph Losey's (The Servant/King & Country) 1951 film noir about a fateful night when a boy goes out to seek revenge against the man who beat his father in front of him. John Drew Barrymore (Drew's dad) wakes up on his birthday to finalize his plans for that night (he & his dad are planning to attend the fights) but in the midst of blowing out the candles on his cake, in walks a man (a sports writer of some renown) who promptly makes his father takes off his shirt, lay down on the floor & get beaten by his cane. The image rolls around in the boy's head so he resolves to get his by taking the family gun & go out into the night to mitigate some payback. At the fights, he befriends a professor (he scalps his extra ticket to him) & while on the chase decides to tag along w/him to a night club. What follows, in seemingly real time, is a journey into choices which may or may not backfire on him as he finally finds the sports scribe & hopefully get the answers he searches for. Running a scant 80 minutes, the film is a marvel shot in actual locations w/the prospect of salvation around every corner. Also starring Dorothy Comingore (she played Kane's mistress in Citizen Kane) & Emile Meyer who plays a nasty heavy who encounters our hero at the fights.


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