7.2/10
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63 user 44 critic

Boomerang! (1947)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 28 April 1947 (Sweden)
The true story of a prosecutor's fight to prove the innocence of a man accused of a notorious murder.

Director:

Elia Kazan

Writers:

Richard Murphy (screenplay), Fulton Oursler (based upon an article published in The Reader's Digest December, 1945) (as Anthony Abbot)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Dana Andrews ... Henry L. Harvey
Jane Wyatt ... Madge Harvey
Lee J. Cobb ... Chief Harold F. Robinson
Cara Williams ... Irene Nelson
Arthur Kennedy ... John Waldron
Sam Levene ... Dave Woods
Taylor Holmes ... T.M. Wade
Robert Keith ... 'Mac' McCreery
Ed Begley ... Paul Harris
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Storyline

This dramatization of a factual incident opens in a quiet Connecticut town where a kindly priest is murdered while waiting at a street corner. The citizens are horrified and demand action from the police. All of the witnesses identify John Waldron, a nervous out-of-towner, as the killer. Although Waldron vehemently denies the crime, no one will believe him. District Attorney Henry Harvey is then put on the case and faces political opposition in his attempt to prove Waldron's innocence. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You saw it made! Now enjoy it on the screen! Stamford's own picture. (Stamford, Connecticut local newspaper ads). See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 April 1947 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Perfect Case See more »

Filming Locations:

Connecticut, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,140,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30-minute radio adaptation on November 10, 1947, with Dana Andrews and Jane Wyatt reprising their film roles. See more »

Quotes

Off-Screen Narrator: But his everyday work was with the people of his parish, and especially with those who sought his advice and counsel. Since he was a man of God, his labors sometimes led him into the strange and secret places of men's souls. He was just and forgiving, but he was also a man, and a stern and uncompromising judge of character.
Father George A. Lambert: [speaking to an anguished-looking middle-aged man] Stop that! Even if I wanted to forgive you, I... I couldn't. It's out of my hands.
[pause]
Father George A. Lambert: Jim, you're a sick man.
Jim Crossman: But ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are listed in the form of pages of a book. See more »

Connections

Featured in A Letter to Elia (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

America, the Beautiful
(uncredited)
Music by Samuel A. Ward
Played during the opening sequence and at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Kazan between A Tree Grows in Brooklyn & On the Waterfront...reason enough to see
21 June 2011 | by secondtakeSee all my reviews

Boomerang! (1947)

In some ways this is an intensely well made and satisfying film, and when you have Dana Andrews in the lead role combined with Elia Kazan directing, and throw in first rate character actor Lee J. Cobb, you have something worth watching.

It's nice early Kazan, but it stumbles at times, and never lifts off, never gels. Here's why.

First of all, it's based (very closely) on fact, and sometimes the facts are dramatic but not necessarily good drama. Hamlet, if it were straight documentary truth, would probably shock more and enchant less. And so here, we start with a horrifying crime which takes the viewer quite by surprise. Then, in a continuing voice-over documentary style, we are launched on a huge manhunt. Facts are gathered, suspects suspected, policework unleashed, all acted and congealed very intelligently. A large twist occurs (with something of a stutter, dramatically), and then we are in a different kind of drama, a courtroom battle, with Andrews playing the unlikely role of prosecutor looking for the actual truth in a case rather than a conviction.

And then the court battle ends, and the movie sort of drizzles to a stop. And you might well say (as I did), "How like life." Or something equally unexciting. It's not a like a neo-realist hyper real movie, using amateur actors and so on. No, it's just an adapted true life crime story that might have been something more. For two sides to this coin, I'd first mention Kazan's own "On the Waterfront" which uses a real life kind of scenario but turns it into a dramatic masterpiece. And then some harder hitting reality movie like "The Phenix City Story" (1955) shows what a dramatic version of the truth, unchanged, might look like.

Of course, Kazan and crew are experts, and this is no dud. Andrews, if he is your taste, is in great form, really, within his shifting role. And the supporting cast does wonders, as cops, and as regular people, which this movie is ultimately about. Recommended, yes, but with expectations in line with, uh, reality.


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