Gambling House (film)

Gambling House is a 1951 American film noir crime film directed by Ted Tetzlaff and starring Victor Mature, Terry Moore and William Bendix.[2]

Gambling House
Theatrical release poster
Directed byTed Tetzlaff
Produced byWarren B. Duff
Screenplay byMarvin Borowsky
Allen Rivkin
Story byErwin S. Gelsey
(as Ervin Gelsey)
StarringVictor Mature
Terry Moore
William Bendix
Music byRoy Webb
CinematographyHarry J. Wild
Edited byRoland Gross
RKO Radio Pictures
Distributed byRKO Radio Pictures
Release date
  • December 27, 1950 (1950-12-27) (NYC)[1]
  • January 20, 1951 (1951-01-20) (US)
Running time
80 minutes
CountryUnited States


A gangster, Joe Farrow, kills a man after a game of craps, then offers gambler Marc Fury a payment of $50,000 if he will take the rap and stand trial. Farrow tries to renege on the money, so Fury steals a ledger with information that could put Farrow behind bars.

Fury manages to be acquitted in court, but immigration officers arrest him and take to Ellis Island and threaten to deport him, proving that neither he nor his parents never become naturalized citizens. Fury slips the ledger into the possession of an immigration social worker, Lynn Warren, then later tracks her down, retrieves the book and tries to begin a romance.

Farrow's gunman comes looking for Fury, but ultimately double-crosses his boss. Lynn still isn't sure how she feels about him, but when Fury offers the $50,000 to a family that needs it to remain in America, she finally admires and trusts him.



The story was originally called Mr Whiskas. It was purchased by RKO in 1947 and scheduled in 1948 as a vehicle for Victor Mature, who had a contract with RKO to make one film a year. However the project was postponed to enable Mature to make Easy Living. In July 1949 it was announced he would make Mr Whiskas next. Warren Duff was to write and produce.[3]

In late 1949 the project was renamed Alias Mike Fury.[4] Mature refused to make the movie and was put on suspension by Fox.[5] The script was rewritten and Mature ended up making the film, which was retitled Gambling House.[6] Filming started February 1950.[7]


When first released, critic Bosley Crowther panned the film. He wrote, "Don't look for very rich pickings in R. K. O.'s Gambling House, a run-of-the-mill melodrama that came to the Mayfair on Saturday. Your chances for solid satisfaction from this tale of a crook who goes straight after meeting a decent young lady are about as good as they would be from a fixed wheel ... Put it down as claptrap and the performance of Mr. Mature as another demonstration of an actor doing the best he can with a bad role. Miss Moore is entirely incidental and William Bendix is mulishly mean as the tough and deceitful rascal who crosses up Mr. Mature. To say any more about it might tend to incriminate somebody."[8]


  1. "Gambling House: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
  2. Gambling House at the TCM Movie Database.
  3. MATURE GETS LEAD IN 'MR. WHISKERS': RKO Names Actor to Gangster Role in Film Based on Gelsey Story -- Duff Is Producer By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES.. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 19 July 1949: 21.
  4. Tetzlaff Will Direct Mature in 'Alias Fury;' Musicals Wynn's Fate Schallert, Edwin. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 30 Nov 1949: A7.
  5. Thomas Pryor, 'STUDIO SUSPENSION FOR VICTOR MATURE: FOX STAR REFUSES TO PLAY ROLE IN RKO FILM, 'MIKE FURY,' ON LOAN-OUT COMMITMENT', New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 14 Dec 1949: 44.
  6. MATURE RETURNED TO PAYROLL AT FOX: Actor Had Been Suspended for Refusing Role in RKO Deal --Now Agrees to Part Of Local Origin By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES.. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 04 Jan 1950: 31
  7. 2 NEW COMERS GET METRO FILM LEADS: Schary Names Nancy Davis, James Whitmore to Co-Star in 'Next Voice You Hear' By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES.. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 02 Feb 1950: 31.
  8. Crowther, Bosley. The New York Times, film review, March 19, 1951. Accessed: July 27, 2013.
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