Sunday, August 2, 2015

Cop Hater (1958)

(TCM May 30, 2012) 

Director: William Berke, Stars: Robert Loggia, Gerald S. O'Loughlin, Shirley Ballard, Vince Gardenia, and Ellen Parker. Cop Hater is the first 87th Precinct police procedural novel by Ed McBain.

The murder of three detectives in quick succession in the 87th Precinct leads Detective Steve Carella (Loggia) on a search that takes him into the city's underworld {font}
Written by Evan Hunter using the name Ed McBain, the book was inspired by a television show he greatly admired, Dragnet. McBain chose to set his 87th Precinct series in the fictional city of Isola, based on New York City.

The city has surrendered to a heat wave in July 1956, not many buildings have air-conditioning. When detective Mike Reardon is on the way to work on the nightshift, he is shot to death from behind with a .45. Steve Carella and his colleagues from the 87th Precinct are looking for their friend's killer, and they have no idea that this is just the beginning of a series of police murders. David Foster is the next victim, at the entrance of his apartment, where the killer has left behind a footprint at the crime scene. Steve Carella and Maguire (O'Loughlin) question the likely suspects. A few nights later the unknown killer ambushes and murders Maguire. Steve Carella fears he will be the next target if he fails to stop him. A young Vince Gardenia plays a stoolie.

Detective Steve Carelli (Loggia) and Teddy Franklin (Parker)
Danny the Gimp (Gardinia)
Teddy (Parker) is Carelli's mute gal pal, she is a cutie and becomes part of the final confrontation after she has just emerged from the tub wearing only a bath towel and the proceedings get on the very of kinky as Teddy is backed onto a table while the killer is seated before her, you wonder which gun he may use. Alice Maguire (Ballard) is equally toothsome parading around in her bra and panties for a good majority of her scenes.

Maguire (O'Loughlin) dealing with the heat wave

Mrs Maguire (Ballard) dealing with it in her way


The films biggest problem is that the investigation sequences seem a bit too rushed in spots making the film uneven, and there seem to be hardly any location shots which gives the film a cheap production feel on the whole. Its not very noir visually but it has an excellent femme fatale. 6.5/10

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