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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Tuesday's Overlooked Films: The Pushover Starring Fred MacMurray and Kim Novak

This 1954 black-and-white crime movie features a solid cast including Fred MacMurray, E.G. Marshall, Dorothy Malone, and introducing the radiant Kim Novak before she went on to bigger and better movie projects. The plot is fairly straightforward where MacMurray plays a cop gone bad who falls for Novak as a gun moll of a notorious bank robber. Dorothy Malone plays a small but key role, and I would've loved if she had a meatier part. The film moves along slowly but surely as MacMurray's complications pile up as they did in his star role in Double Indemnity with Barbara Stanwyck. My problem with MacMurray as a bad guy is that I remember him from the family-friendly TV show "My Three Sons." He just doesn't look like a plug ugly to me. Of course, Kim Novak steals all the scenes she's in with her stunning beauty and sultry looks at the camera. It's easy to understand why MacMurray is so enchanted by her. The dialogue is fine, the musical score rousing, and the characters are well-defined. Still, something is missing, and it might well be the pace, especially in setting up the premise. Still, I enjoyed my catching The Pushover and seeing Kim Novak at the start of her career.