Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Dillinger, the was the ninth effort from the enterprising King Brothers, and their most financially successful film to date. Lawrence Tierney became an overnight cult favorite with his gritty portrayal of maverick bank robber John Dillinger, though top billing is bestowed upon Edmund Lowe as gang chieftain Specs. The film traces Dillinger's criminal career from his first petty theft to his spectacular 1934 demise outside Chicago's Biograph Theater (incidentally, this film was banned in Chicago for several years). Anne Jeffreys plays Dillinger's fictional moll Helen, while Elisha Cook Jr., Marc Lawrence, and Eduardo Ciannelli go through their usual crime-flick paces. The film's set piece is an elaborate armored-car holdup, lifted in its entirety from footage originally shot for Fritz Lang's You Only Live Once (1937). Screenwriter Philip Yordan, fresh from his Broadway triumph Anna Lucasta, earned an Academy Award nomination for Dillinger.
gangster, FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation), career, movie-theater