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The Racket

The Racket (1951)

tomatometer

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 2
Fresh: 0 | Rotten: 2

audience

45

liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 805

My Rating

Movie Info

The Racket was based on a play by Bartlett Cormack, first filmed as a silent in 1928. The storyline was updated to include references to Estes Kefauver's Senate Crime Investigating Committee: otherwise, the plot (and much of the dialogue) was lifted bodily from the Cormack play. Racketeer Robert Ryan has managed to get several government and law-enforcement higher-ups in his pocket. But Ryan can't touch the incorruptible police officer Robert Mitchum, who refuses all attempts at bribery. Ryan

Apr 25, 1990

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All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (1) | Rotten (4) | DVD (2)

Softer than it should have been, then, but still dark enough to lose yourself in.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As for the film's observations on crooks and poltics, they are so generalized and familiar that this is just a case of one more time around.

March 25, 2006 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[A] hard-hitting melodrama.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

A typical gangster film.

September 4, 2001 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The Racket

In New York, corruption has reached all levels under the command of the powerful mobster lord "The Old Man" and the local crime boss Nick Scanlon (Robert Ryan). When the Crime Commission under the command of Chief Investigator Harry Craig (Les Tremayne) meets with governor, the disbelief of the population is almost total. Craig tells that the uncorrupted Captain Thomas McQuigg (Robert Mitchum) was moved to the 7th District Police Station and has the intention to clean his district. The Commission counts on the testimony of Roy Higgins (Howland Chamberlain) but Nick sends one of his men to eliminate him. McQuigg uses his honest Officer Bob Johnson (William Talman) to arrest Nick's brother Joe Scanlon (Brett King) and his lover and singer Irene Hayes (Lizabeth Scott) to press Nick, under the protest of the corrupt District Attorney Mortimer X. Welsh (Ray Collins), who is supported by the mafia to the position of judge on the next elections. When Nick kills Bob, he sees the collapse of his empire and the end of the support of "The Old Man".

"The Racket" is a good but dated police story disclosing corruption in all levels of New York City. The ending is extremely commercial, moralist and without credibility, with the subpoenas of Mortimer Welsh and Detective Sergeant Turk and the romance between Irene Hayes and the naive City Press journalist Dave Ames. Robert Ryan is excellent in the role of the violent and old-fashioned criminal, but Robert Mitchum has a bureaucratic performance. Just as a curiosity, the name of the owner of the car used by Joe stamped on the newspaper is William R. Wyler, maybe in a tribute to the great director.
November 27, 2012
bbcfloridabound
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

I can't remember this movie very well, it didn't make a big impression on me, it's another cop drama. It's okay, not bad, but not good either.
October 29, 2010
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

Ryan and Mitchum are pretty good as rivals in this cops and gangster film, but the dialog is really the star here
February 22, 2008
kenstachnik

Super Reviewer

This movie kicks ass even though the leading lady has a more masculine voice than Will Arnet.
November 2, 2006
mjgildea

Super Reviewer

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

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Foreign Titles

  • The Racket (1951) (DE)
  • The Racket (1951) (UK)
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