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5 Against the House
Directed by Phil Karlson • 1955 • United States
Starring Guy Madison, Kim Novak, Brian Keith
Noir specialist Phil Karlson brings an offbeat verve this briskly entertaining heist thriller, which features an early performance from soon-to-be superstar Kim Novak. She is among a group of college friends who, as a joke, devise a seemingly foolproof plan to rob a large Reno casino. When one of the participants—a Korean War vet with PTSD—decides that the plot isn’t just a game, their supposedly harmless prank suddenly becomes all too real.