The Long Wait (1954)

94 mins | Mystery | May 1954

Director:

Victor Saville

Producer:

Lesser Samuels

Cinematographer:

Frank F. Planer

Editor:

Ronald Sinclair

Production Designer:

Boris Leven

Production Company:

Parklane Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The opening title cards read: "Victor Saville presents Mickey Spillane's The Long Wait ." Saville also produced three other 1950s films based on Spillane novels: I, the Jury , Kiss Me Deadly (see above) and My Gun is Quick (see below). The Long Wait marked Anthony Quinn's first leading man role in an English-language feature. The HR production chart includes Pat Orsatti and Shirley Patterson in the cast, but their appearance in the completed film has not been ... More Less

The opening title cards read: "Victor Saville presents Mickey Spillane's The Long Wait ." Saville also produced three other 1950s films based on Spillane novels: I, the Jury , Kiss Me Deadly (see above) and My Gun is Quick (see below). The Long Wait marked Anthony Quinn's first leading man role in an English-language feature. The HR production chart includes Pat Orsatti and Shirley Patterson in the cast, but their appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
1 May 1954.
---
Daily Variety
28 Apr 54
p. 3.
Film Daily
14 May 54
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Oct 53
p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Apr 54
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
1 May 54
p. 2278.
New York Times
3 Jul 54
p. 9.
Variety
5 May 54
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Ed supv
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
SOUND
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod supv
Casting dir
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Long Wait by Mickey Spillane (New York, 1951).
SONGS
"Once," words and music by Harold Spina and Bob Russell.
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Mickey Spillane's The Long Wait
Release Date:
May 1954
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 26 May 1954
Production Date:
began early November 1953 at Samuel Goldwyn Studios
Copyright Claimant:
Parklane Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
14 May 1954
Copyright Number:
LP3695
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
94
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
16850
SYNOPSIS

After a hitchhiker is burned and loses all his papers in a truck accident, he recovers in a local hospital but has complete amnesia. He checks himself out of the hospital and spends the next two years working in an oil field. One day in a bar, a rival for the affections of a floozie shows the man a photograph of him which he says he found, during a business trip, in a photographer's window in a town called Lyncastle, seven hundred miles away. After the amnesiac leaves to go there, the traveler reveals the true source of the photograph: a "Wanted For Murder" poster which states that Johnny McBride is wanted for the murder of District Attorney Robert Minnow of Lyncastle. When Johnny reaches Lyncastle, he checks into a hotel and is greeted by the old desk clerk, Pop Henderson, who arranges to meet him later to talk over old times. However, two police officers, Lindsey and Tucker, come to Johnny's room to arrest him. After Johnny tells them that he cannot remember anything, they inform him that he was a bank teller who stole $250,000, then shot the district attorney who was going to prosecute him. The police attempt to match his fingerprints to those found on the gun, but his fingers were badly burned in the accident so they have to release him. While reading the newspaper account of the killing in the local library, Johnny meets Alan Logan, the reporter who covered the events. The newspaper story reported that Johnny had a girl friend, Vera West, the banker's secretary, who left town shortly after Johnny disappeared. As Johnny leaves the library, Pop runs up to ... +


After a hitchhiker is burned and loses all his papers in a truck accident, he recovers in a local hospital but has complete amnesia. He checks himself out of the hospital and spends the next two years working in an oil field. One day in a bar, a rival for the affections of a floozie shows the man a photograph of him which he says he found, during a business trip, in a photographer's window in a town called Lyncastle, seven hundred miles away. After the amnesiac leaves to go there, the traveler reveals the true source of the photograph: a "Wanted For Murder" poster which states that Johnny McBride is wanted for the murder of District Attorney Robert Minnow of Lyncastle. When Johnny reaches Lyncastle, he checks into a hotel and is greeted by the old desk clerk, Pop Henderson, who arranges to meet him later to talk over old times. However, two police officers, Lindsey and Tucker, come to Johnny's room to arrest him. After Johnny tells them that he cannot remember anything, they inform him that he was a bank teller who stole $250,000, then shot the district attorney who was going to prosecute him. The police attempt to match his fingerprints to those found on the gun, but his fingers were badly burned in the accident so they have to release him. While reading the newspaper account of the killing in the local library, Johnny meets Alan Logan, the reporter who covered the events. The newspaper story reported that Johnny had a girl friend, Vera West, the banker's secretary, who left town shortly after Johnny disappeared. As Johnny leaves the library, Pop runs up to him and is shot. Before he dies, however, he tells Johnny that Vera is back, has changed her appearance and is working for Servo Enterprises. When Johnny goes to racketeer Servo's office, he meets secretary Carol Shay, but he realizes that she is not Vera. After Johnny suggests that Minnow was killed because he was trying to clean up Servo's rackets, Servo tells him to leave town. Later, Johnny is picked up by three of Servo's gunmen and driven to a quarry, but he manages to kill all three and escapes. When he visits Servo's casino, Johnny meets floor manager Wendy Miller and tells her he is looking for Vera, but she does not help him. At the bank where he worked, Johnny is welcomed by bank president Gardiner who shows him the teller's window where he worked in an attempt to jog his memory. Troy Avalon, Servo's moll, tells Johnny about a ladies' gown shop that Servo owns and there he meets saleswoman Venus. Later, Servo and corrupt cop Tucker examine photos of Vera to see how plastic surgery might have transformed her into Carol, Wendy, Venus or Troy. Later, Tucker follows Johnny when he visits Gardiner's house, where the banker offers him a check to leave town and admits that Servo's mob runs Lyncastle. Meanwhile, Servo summons all four women to the casino and roughs them up, but none will admit to being Vera. Servo then brings Johnny in and beats him up in the hope that Vera will not want to see him being beaten and will reveal herself. Later, Servo has a hunch that Venus is Vera and holds her hostage at a deserted power station. Johnny goes there but is captured by Servo and tied up. Venus asks Servo's permission to kiss her fellow for the last time and in doing so takes Johnny's concealed gun and shoots Servo. Meanwhile, at the casino, Wendy takes a key from a drawer, then phones Lindsey to say that she has something of great importance to the McBride case. She then adds that she is Vera West. When Johnny breaks into Gardiner's house, Gardiner phones Tucker then shoots at Johnny, but Johnny takes the gun away from him. Johnny has deduced that when Servo arrived in town, three years earlier, he demanded $250,000 from Gardiner, who agreed to back the racketeer but would retain fifty-one percent of all profits. Gardiner then framed Johnny for the money he took from the bank and used Johnny's teller's gun in a mechanical device to shoot Minnow. Johnny then threatens Gardiner with an unloaded gun in a similar device constructed for him by reporter Logan. Tucker arrives, but Johnny owerpowers both him and Gardiner. At his hotel, the real Vera tells Johnny that she had determined to prove him innocent and had plastic surgery in order to infiltrate Servo's organization and had only recently realized that she had the key to Gardiner's safe deposit box containing incriminating evidence. When Johnny asks her to marry him, she tells him that they are already married, and Johnny begins to remember. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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