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"Almost as much as I have missed seeing the film adaptation of Wiliam McGivern's Rogue Cop. In my opinion it was McGivern's best novel, yet I had only once seen the film at around 4:00 AM after having had a snootful. Now I have it on disc and I can savor it the more."
Great film and, like the previous year's THE BIG HEAT, quite faithful to its source. In some ways, I think the film version of COP might even surpass HEAT.
1954 was a good year for McGivern. In addition to a film based on his novel about a bad cop who turns good, there was a film about a good cop who turns bad, also based on one of his novels, SHIELD FOR MURDER, starring Edmund O'Brien, an underrated tough guy actor who turned in top-flight hard-boiled performances, sometimes as a good guy sometimes as a bad guy, in films like THE KILLERS, WHITE HEAT, D.O.A., BETWEEN MIDNIGHT AND DAWN, and PETE KELLY'S BLUES.
1954, for some reason seems to have been the year of the crooked cop in movies. In addition to ROGUE COP and SHIELD FOR MURDER, there was PRIVATE HELL 36, directed by Don Siegel, and PUSHOVER, based partly on Thomas Walsh's THE NIGHT WATCH and partly on Bill S. Ballinger's RAFFERTY, which introduced Kim Novak. Corrupt cops were a common noir theme in the '50's (TOUCH OF EVIL, THE MAN WHO CHEATED HIMSELF, WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS, etc.), but the trend seemed to reach its height in '54.
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