7.0/10
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9 user 9 critic

Monkey on My Back (1957)

Approved | | Biography, Drama | 1958 (Argentina)
The true story of Barney Ross, a World War II hero and champion professional boxer, who became addicted to morphine.

Director:

André De Toth

Writers:

Ivan Bunny (biographical material furnished by), Paul Dudley | 2 more credits »
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cameron Mitchell ... Barney Ross
Dianne Foster ... Cathy Holland
Paul Richards ... Rico
Jack Albertson ... Sam Pian
Kathy Garver ... Noreen
Lisa Golm ... Barney's Mother
Barry Kelley ... Big Ralph
Dayton Lummis Dayton Lummis ... J.L. McAvoy
Lewis Charles ... Lew Surati
Raymond Greenleaf ... Dr. A.J. Latham
Richard Benedict ... Art Winch
Brad Harris ... Spike McAvoy
Robert Holton Robert Holton ... Dr. Sullivan
Edit

Storyline

The true story of Barney Ross, a World War II hero and champion professional boxer, who became addicted to morphine.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

TODAY - A DRUG ADDICT! Yesterday - a Marine hero...idol of millions! See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1958 (Argentina) See more »

Also Known As:

Monkey on My Back: The Story of Barney Ross See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Former "Our Gang" child star 'Scotty Beckett (I)' makes his final film appearance as a medic who helps Ross get hooked on morphine. Sadly, Beckett himself would die of a drug overdose ten years after this film was released. See more »

Goofs

When Barney leaves the hospital in the closing scene, there is clearly an open courtyard between the hospital and the gate. As Barney and Cathy run toward each other, they appear to be on a tree lined lane. When the camera shows them exiting the gate, the open courtyard appears again. See more »

Quotes

Barney Ross: Look Rico. I only got eight bucks.
Cathy Holland: Start scrathin'. You see, you don't seem to understand. I'm risking ten years of my life with every move I make. I wanna get paid for it. And if I don't, my friends will break your wrists.
Barney Ross: Let me up Rico. Let me up!
Cathy Holland: You don't understand champ. The real torture hasn't started yet. The monkey will be on your back tomorrow.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"The Beginning" is shown in the closing credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

There is an "Unrated Version" and a "Censored Version" that only effect reel 5a as indicated on elements in MGM/UA's database. No indication was given for what was cut in order to determine what the variation is in these two cuts. See more »

Connections

Edited into Dusk to Dawn Drive-In Trash-o-Rama Show Vol. 9 (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Daring For Its Day But A Disappointment
18 December 2004 | by HandlinghandelSee all my reviews

This could have been a powerful movie. As it is, it's a precursor to heartwarming TV movies of the week. It's about a boxer and it has no punch.

The protagonist was a real person and this is his story. Maybe it had to be toned down. But, though Cameron Mitchell seems to be doing his best in the lead role, it is never convincing.

Diane Foster is wooden and very much of her time. She's like a sitcom mom, not the wife of an ex-boxer, returned war hero turned junkie.

Very little rings true. The seamy streets where Mitchell goes to get his fixes have a very obvious backlot look. The prosties he passes are kind of fun: They are straight from Police Gazette covers.

The other lowlifes, though, are like comic book exaggerations. It's interesting to note the low billing given the actor who plays his drug dealer. The good guys get the high billing. But this character, though not one of the plum roles if one were an actor reading the script, is pivotal.


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