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Big screen classics

Pick-up on South Street

In Samuel Fuller’s New York noir, the FBI pressure a pickpocket to help them track down Communist spies.

Image from Pick-up on South Street

USA 1953
Dir Samuel Fuller
With Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter
Certificate PG

Fuller’s film about a pickpocket (Widmark) pressurised by the FBI to help them hunt down Communist spies is characteristic in its blending of a pacy, punchy generic narrative, an unapologetically forthright approach to political issues, and vividly drawn characters driven by none-too-lofty motives. In short, it’s an ancestor of Fassbinder’s early, more ironic contributions to the crime genre like Gods of the Plague.


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