The Big Combo

The Big Combo

Director: Joseph H. Lewis Cast: Cornel Wilde, Richard Conte, Brian Donlevy

DVD (Wide Screen)

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Police Lt. Leonard Diamond (Cornel Wilde) is criticized by his superior Capt. Peterson (Robert Middleton) for his obsessive but fruitless investigation of organized crime boss Mr. Brown (Richard Conte). Peterson calls it a waste of the taxpayers' money motivated by Diamond's love for Brown's girlfriend Susan Lowell (Jean Wallace). Watched at all times by henchmen Mingo (Earl Holliman) and Fante (Lee Van Cleef), and masochistically drawn to Brown, Susan is unable to walk away from him. She overdoses on pills in a suicide attempt and, in her delirium, utters the name "Alicia." Diamond follows up on that new lead, and as he gets closer to defeating his adversary, the arrogant and sadistic Brown retaliates by capturing and torturing Diamond. Meanwhile Brown's former boss but now humiliated underling, Joe McClure (Brian Donlevy), believing that Brown has gone too far in his personal vendetta against Diamond, tries to enlist Mingo and Fante in overthrowing him. However, they remain loyal, and, in a chillingly silent scene visually punctuated by flashes of gunfire, they shoot the deaf McClure after Brown removes his hearing aid. Though superficially a story of good vs. evil, Joseph H. Lewis's film noir presents a complex world, visually captured by John Alton's stark photography, in which the lines between good/evil and love/hate are not always clear.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/09/2015
UPC: 0644827540624
Original Release: 1955
Source: Reel Vault
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Sales rank: 22,389

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Cornel Wilde Leonard Diamond
Richard Conte Mr. Brown
Brian Donlevy McClure
Jean Wallace Susan Lowell
Robert Middleton Peterson
Lee Van Cleef Fante
Earl Holliman Mingo
Helen Walker Alicia
Jay Adler Sam Hill
John Hoyt Dreyer
Ted de Corsia Bettini
Helene Stanton Rita
Roy Gordon Audubon
Whit Bissell Doctor
Steve Mitchell Bennie Smith
Baynes Barron Young Detective
James McCallion Lab Technician
Tony Michaels Actor
Brian O'Hara Malloy
Rita Gould Nurse
Bruce Sharpe Actor
Michael Mark Hotel Clerk
Philip Van Zandt Mr. Jones
Donna Drew Miss Hartleby

Technical Credits
Joseph H. Lewis Director
John Alton Cinematographer
Robert S. Eisen Editor
Rudi Feld Production Designer
Sidney Harmon Producer
Don Loper Costumes/Costume Designer
David Raksin Score Composer
Philip Yordan Screenwriter

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