The Long Wait

The Long Wait is a 1954 crime drama film noir directed by Victor Saville starring Anthony Quinn, Charles Coburn, Gene Evans and Peggie Castle.

The Long Wait
Theatrical release poster
Directed byVictor Saville
Produced byLesser Samuels
Screenplay by
  • Alan Green
  • Lesser Samuels
Based onthe novel
by Mickey Spillane
Music byMario Castelnuovo-Tedesco
CinematographyFranz Planer
Edited byRonald Sinclair
Parklane Pictures
Distributed byUnited Artists
Release date
  • May 26, 1954 (1954-05-26) (United States)
Running time
94 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1.5 million[1]


Johnny McBride is badly hurt while hitch hiking and loses his memory when the car he is riding in crashes. Two years later, a clue leads him to his old home town, where he finds he is a murder suspect. McBride tries to clear his name of the presumed murder charges. Thugs working for the local mob boss try to end his meddling.



The New York Times called it slow paced, boring, and likely to disappoint fans of the novel.[2]

Noir analysis

Film Noir: An Encyclopedic Reference to the American Style by Alain Silver and Elizabeth Ward writes: "The inclusion of amnesia, giving the hero a sense of hopelessness compounded by the frustration of his loss of identity, instills a distinct existential bias into McBride's search. This attitude combines with a pervading sense of corruption and dehumanization to give The Long Wait a fatalistic noir ethos."[3]


  2. T., H. H. (1954-07-03). "The Long Wait (1954)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-02-15.
  3. Alain Silver and Elizabeth Ward (1992). Film Noir An Encyclopedic Reference to the American Style. The Overlook Press. ISBN 0-87951-479-5.

Further reading

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