Robert Mitchum, professional gambler, and Jane Russell, posing as a rich girl so she can land a husband, meet at a remote Mexican resort. Mitchum is there to fulfill a strange bargain which will pay him $50,000, details of which he has not yet been informed. Two strike plenty of sparks in their meetings as each waits out plot development.
Story draws an obvious parallel on Lucky Luciano. The script has a deported gangster plotting to get back into the States from Italy by taking the face and identification of an American. Mitchum has been chosen as the one to drop out of sight so Raymond Burr can take on the new identity.
Suspense gets in some real licks when Mitchum learns he’s to be killed, not just to go into hiding, and the danger of his situation is brought home fully when Tim Holt, government agent who has warned him, is killed by Burr’s men.
Both Mitchum and Russell score strongly. Russell’s full charms are fetchingly displayed in smart costumes that offer the minimum of protection. Much is made of Vincent Price’s scenery-chewing actor character and much of it supplies relief to the film’s otherwise taut development.