Shadow on the Window (1957): American Crime Film Noir (Boy in Peril)

William Asher directed The Shadow on the Window, a crime film noir, starring Philip Carey, Betty Garrett and John Drew Barrymore.

Upon seeing his mother Linda terrorized by three thugs, young Petey (Jerry Mathers) is traumatized and wanders off. Truck drivers find him and the boy is taken to police headquarters, where he is recognized as son of detective Tony Atlas (Philip Carey).

In a state of shock, he cannot even recognize his dad, much less explain the event. Three young men – Joey (Gerald Sarracini), Gil (Corey Allen), and Jess (John Drew Barrymore) – are holding Linda Atlas hostage in the home of Canfield (Watson Downs), for whom she had been working as stenographer.

In the course of robbery, Canfield has been killed and the three argue about whether to kill Linda; they think she is the only eyewitness and do not believe that she has a son.

Canfield’s niece and her husband are looking for the missed who is a regular dinner date. When the couple sees Linda’s car, they assume the man is entertaining a woman, and leave.

Eventually, the truckers are located and provide about  where they found the boy. Petey then recognizes the tractor; they find one of his toy cowboy guns.

In the end, Jess holds Linda at gunpoint, but Tony disarm him. Finally seeing his  his mother, Petey emerges from his shock.

Philip Carey as Tony Atlas (as Phil Carey)
Betty Garrett as Linda Atlas
John Drew Barrymore as Jess Reber (as John Barrymore Jr.)
Corey Allen as Gil Ramsey
Gerald Sarracini as Joey Gomez
Jerry Mathers as Petey Atlas
Sam Gilman as Sgt. Paul Denke
Rusty Lane as Capt. McQuade
Ainslie Pryor as Dr. Hodges
Paul Picerni as Bigelow
William Leslie as Stuart
Doreen Woodbury as Molly
Ellie Kent as Girl