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The Last Installment (1945)

Approved | | Short, Crime, Drama | 5 May 1945 (USA)
A young, soon-to-be-released convict idolizes the exciting life of a famous Roaring Twenties gangster he reads about in a magazine serial, but the warden tells him how the story ends before he can read the last installment.


Walter Hart


DeVallon Scott (story), Alan Friedman (story) | 2 more credits »




Complete credited cast:
Walter Sande ... Bull Moose Brannigan
Cameron Mitchell ... Clyde Peeler
William 'Bill' Phillips ... Louie (as Wm. 'Bill' Phillips)
Robert Lewis ... Kovak (as Bob Lewis)
Addison Richards ... Warden


Cell mates Clyde and Griff are both soon being released from jail. Griff offers Clyde an opportunity to continue a life of crime on the outside, implying that his criminal connections would lead to as glamorous a criminal life as there ever was, comparing this situation to the glory days of the 1920s. Clyde is reading a story in a magazine about 1920s underworld czar, Bull Moose Brannigan. In the story, Brannigan is able to take control of the criminal world, stamping out anyone who tried to muscle in on his territory. Because of Brannigan's life, he who could buy anything he wanted, Clyde is thinking about taking Griff up on his offer, believing he may have the opportunity to become the next Bull Moose Brannigan in doing so. The warden, upon Clyde's release, hopes he has a way to keep Clyde on the straight and narrow on the outside. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Crime | Drama








Release Date:

5 May 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Last Installment: A Crime Does Not Pay Subject See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Follows They're Always Caught (1938) See more »

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User Reviews

A tad preachy but excellent in spite of this.
24 November 2013 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This installment of the Crime Does Not Pay series begins in prison. A young punk (Cameron Mitchell) is looking forward to returning to a life of crime after his release. Much of this is because while he was in prison, he entertained himself by reading about the exploits of a big-time gangster of the roaring twenties--'Bull Moose' Brannigan (Walter Slade). And the film then goes through a long series of flashbacks showing Brannigan's exploits. However, the soon to be paroled man has not yet finished the story--and the warden invites him in to his office to let him know the rest of the story.

While this film is a bit preachier than most, it is clearly violent and the sort of thing that hearkens back to the best films in the series that were made in the 1930s. During the war years, most of these shorts dipped in quality. But with the war practically won, MGM returned to making crime films about crime! Well worth seeing and entertaining.

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