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Detective Story 1951
Description: Says the storyline of one day in the lives of the different folks who populate a police detective squad. An embittered cop, Det. Jim McLeod (Douglas), leads a precinct of characters in their grim everyday war with the city's lowlife. The characters who pass through the precinct over the course of the day contain a young petty embezzler, a pair of burglars, and a naive shoplifter.
Released: 19 May 1952 Director: William Wyler Writers: Philip Yordan (screenplay), Robert Wyler (screenplay), Sidney Kingsley (based on the play by) Actors: Kirk Douglas, Eleanor Parker, William Bendix, Cathy O'Donnell Genres: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir, Romance
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Detective Story Reviews:

This top-notch police storyline rises far above the norm for its type. A real example of ensemble acting, the movie incorporates many well-known hero actors all putting in first-rate work, led by the magnificent efforts of Kirk Douglas and William Bendix, the latter in what may be his greatest screen role. This may be one of the earliest examples of the "typical day" genre, in which multiple storyline lines occurring in a single day in a certain locale are melded into a entire (a category exemplified by the "Hill Road Blues" and "Barney Miller" of tv). An perfect script and nice direction, aided by interesting characters, hold the dramatic tension moving along briskly to the searing conclusion. This is not your run-of-the-mill police story, and is definitely worth a see.


In one day in the 21st Precinct of Fresh York, many criminals are booked after being arrested: a shoplifter is brought after stealing a purse in a department store; two burglars with extensive criminal record are captured by a policeman burgling an apartment; the tiny time embezzler Arthur Kindred (Craig Hill), who is primary, is arrested without any resistance. The tough Detective McLeod (Kirk Douglas), who loves his wife Mary (Eleanor Parker), is an honest detective with powerful principles and code of honor and zero tolerance. He is near to conclude a situation vs an abortionist, Dr. Karl Schneider (George Macready), with the testimony of a witness that is coming to identify Dr. Schneider in the precinct. However, the girl is bribed and the upset McLeod hits Schneider, and he insinuates to McLeod's chief, Lt. Monaghan (Horace McMahon), that the trouble is private and gives the name of Mary McLeod. Lt. Monaghan invites Mary to come to his office for investigation, when deep innermost secrets of her past are disclosed leading to a tragedy."Detective Story" is amazingly intense and full of emotions in spite of being shot practically in only one scenario in the interior of the precinct. Kirk Douglas gives an outstanding performance, developing a complex hero that sees his principles destroyed in a couple of hours with a nice intensity. Eleanor Parker is also fantastic, in the dramatic and heartbreaking role of Mary McLeod. The direction of William Wyler is excellent as usual. My vote is eight.Title (Brazil): "Chaga de Fogo" ("Sore of Fire")


An assortment of detectives and an assortment of criminals, all gathered together under the oppressive 21st Precint roof. It's a day that nobody show will ever forget, for better or worse...Directed by William Wyler (Best years Of Our Lives, Ben-Hur & Wuthering Heights) and starring Kirk Douglas, Eleanor Parker, William Bendix, Cathy O'Donnell and Joseph Wiseman.Detective Storyline is based on the smash hit Broadway enjoy by Sidney Kingsley, adapted by Phillip Yordan and Robert Wyler, it's with much relief to me that the worry of it being a stagy production never now materialises. Practically set on one bleak, but quite excellently appropriate set (creation courtesy of Hal Pereira & Earl Hedrick), Detective Storyline manages to rise above its very easy plot by boasting interesting characters in a pot boiling storyline just waiting to peak. Every hero has much to offer the film, be it oddly quirky or overtly intense, within the confines of this particular precinct, the characters make engrossing drama.It's a hard movie to sell without giving too much away, by outlaying the hero persona's and mental fortitude's, I personally feel that it will dull the impact of this influential crime category piece. It's got true raw emotive acting, particularly from Kirk Douglas as Jim McLeod and Eleanor Parker as his wife Mary, while the technical aspects (watch Lee Garmes' camera glide like a third party witness) are impressively high. And with it embracing as it does, morality themes, it also doesn't lack for interest to the cranial head scratching crowd. It's by definition to me an all encompassing picture, one that is actually sure to be a perennial viewing in my home. It's not a standard fare crime picture, and it most definitely is a talky film, but it works incredibly well, so one can only hope that many others will feel the same as me, namely that it is a fine and essential category piece. 8/10



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