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The Grissom Gang (1971)

Kim Darby , Scott Wilson , Robert Aldrich  |  R |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Kim Darby, Scott Wilson, Tony Musante, Robert Lansing, Connie Stevens
  • Directors: Robert Aldrich
  • Writers: James Hadley Chase, Leon Griffiths
  • Producers: Robert Aldrich, Walter Blake, William Aldrich
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Full Screen, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Anchor Bay/Starz
  • DVD Release Date: October 31, 2000
  • Run Time: 128 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305971889
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #576,275 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Grissom Gang" on IMDb

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
(7)
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kim Darby is terrific in dramatic role! September 30, 2011
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This is an overlooked movie, in my opinion; one that I wanted to view simply to see Kim Darby playing a more mature role than her "adorable" teen role in True Grit (Special Collector's Edition) opposite the iconic actor John Wayne. When the new version of "True Grit" was released it brought back memories of Darby and aroused my curiosity about how she looked and acted at an older age.

A friend told me about The Grissom Gang, raving over Kim's acting abilities and I had to see for myself.

Yes! Yes! Yes! Darby is excellent in the role of a snooty society girl who is kidnapped by a gang of petty hoodlums with Ma Grissom as the very cruel mother and leader of the gang of three brothers. She treats the "spoiled little rich girl" brutally and would have killed her if it weren't that her youngest (and favorite) son Slim develops a big crush on Darby's character, Barbara Blandish. Slim is simple-minded and easily manipulated by Barbara--who doesn't fool old Ma for a second--which adds to the plot's complexity.

The Grissom Gang are amateurs compared to a more professional crew who thwart their plans. In addition to Darby's excellent acting, Scot Wilson is great in the role of Slim Grisson, Connie Stevens is realistic as the dumb gangster "moll," and Tony Musante is vicious as the leader of the pro gang. But Irene Dailey plays the cold-blooded Ma Grissom to perfection; she made me cringe with fear and disgust.
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3.0 out of 5 stars "Grissom Gang" Not Entirely Successful December 12, 2012
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Whatever were Robert Aldrich's intentions with his 1971 "The Grissom Gang" it is uncertain if it were a gritty gangster film or a black comedy, it is not entirely successful as anything. I have seen largely many of Aldrich's films and he has not missed ever with me to make entertaining yet heavy-handed and often very funny movies. After "The Grissom Gang" he would still make "Emperor of the North" (another piece where sadism reigns) and "The Longest Yard" perhaps his most successful movie since "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" and "The Dirty Dozen." "The Grissom Gang" was based on the controversial book, "No Orchids for Miss Blandish" by James Hadley Chase with a script by Leon Griffiths and a re-make of its 1948 British film version. The acting which features Kim Darby and Scott Wilson (previously one of the no-name stars playing one of the killers in Richard Brooks' film version of "In Cold Blood") is generally good. Darby is very good, but Wilson gives one hell of a performance despite Aldrich's lack of sympathy for the relationship of those two characters when I think he should have played some of the emotions Wilson reaches with Darby and Tony Musante and Irene Dailey (as "Ma Grissom," a performance that also stands out with bravura) for seriousness which would have given the film a tenderness they seem to need that Aldrich may have been incapable of. Dailey's insane hysterical laughter while spraying her machine gunfire is typical of his bit of a lark while reeling in the sadism. But she is a good menace. To laugh at Wilson is not in the humanely best interest of his character's purpose. Connie Stevens in another supporting role does not come off as well and she would have her characterization of "Scorchy" still to come in her career. Read more ›
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4.0 out of 5 stars A 40 year old film that stands the test of time. October 13, 2012
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It could have been made yesterday. You wouldn't say it was made in 1971. The image is very good, and once you start you can't stop watching it up to the end. I would remark the performances of the actors, some interesting topics that emerge from the story and the direction by Robert Aldrich.
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4.0 out of 5 stars APPEARANCES ARE DECEIVING August 25, 2011
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About a gang that kidnaps a rich guy's daughter for ransom. Initially she's picked up by a motley group of local thugs going for their once-in-a-lifetime big score. However, they're intercepted by a gang of real pros who eliminate them and take the gal. The gang is determined to kill their captive after picking up the ransom, but a small problem arises when one of the boys falls for the young woman.

The vastly underappreciated and always-excellent character actor Scott Wilson [IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT and IN COLD BLOOD, both 1967] delivers a tour de force, playing the mentally limited, inexperienced but psychopathic member hit with the love bug. Another terrific performance by Kim Darby [TRUE GRIT, 1969] as the snooty socialite, Barbara Blandish, who stays alive only because Wilson, as Slim Grissom, has his first crush. The gang's leader and brains, however, is Slim's mom, a Ma Barker-type played superbly and with gusto by Irene Dailey [daytime soap ANOTHER WORLD, 1964]---she wants the girl dead. Tony Musante [THE DETECTIVE, 1968, and who can forget his riveting performance in the cult classic, THE INCIDENT, 1967], Ralph Waite [yep, Papa Walton in the classic TV series, THE WALTONS, 1972-1981 BUT a fabulous bad guy: TROUBLE MAN and CHATOS LAND, both 1972] and comic Joey Faye round up the rest of the group. Director Robert Aldrich throws some curves our way perfectly casting Connie Stevens as the annoying, bigmouth, empty-headed showgirl who spills the beans and, thus, gets hers. Nice seeing vet Robert Lansing [who can forget the great TWILIGHT ZONE episode, The Long Morrow, 1964] as a private detective hired to find the gang and the gal. Wesley Addy [also in Aldrich's noir cult classic KISS ME DEADLY, 1955] plays the kidnapped girls dad.
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