This remake of Bartlett Cormack’s old play has been handled to emphasize clearcut action and suspense and the casting is just right to stress the rough and ready toughness in the script.
Robert Mitchum is the honest police captain pitted against Robert Ryan, the mobster, and both dominate the picture with forceful credible performances that add a lot of interest. Further masculine attention is gained through the strong work of William Talman as a rookie cop, the pairing of Ray Collins and William Conrad as crooked politicians, and other assorted male castes.
Development is enlivened with some solid thriller sequences, such as a rooftop fight between Mitchum and a gunman, careening autos and crashes, and gunplay between the forces of good and evil.
Femme interest is at a minimum, but Lizabeth Scott, as a nitery singer does what she has to do well.
RKO. Director John Cromwell; Producer Edmund Grainger; Screenplay William Wister Haines, W.R. Burnett; Camera George E. Diskant; Editor Sherman Todd; Music Constantin Bakaleinikoff (dir.); Art Director Albert S. D'Agostino, Jack Okey
(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1951. Running time: 89 MIN.
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