Alone on "Executioner's Row," Ned Blessing is a haggard, old cowboy and former sheriff. With nothing more than reflections on a life that's been filled with danger and excitement, he marks ... See full summary »
A disillusioned young recluse hated his life, his boss and his job swindling folks at the bottom of a struggling economy. Two years later he had the perfect job, the perfect life and the ... See full summary »
Danielle Moné Truitt
It all begins with a text message. An anonymous message sent to the cell phones of a dozen young men and women. The message is an invitation to attend one killer of a party. Just who sent ... See full summary »
A neglectful mother overhears her husband on the telephone at their workplace talking with their babysitter. She discovers they are having an affair and are going to have a baby. She ... See full summary »
Stark naked man comes out from the sea and begins to walk the streets, interfering in daily episodes, always in search of justice. He names himself Finis Hominis (The End of Man, in latin),... See full summary »
José Mojica Marins
José Mojica Marins,
Jimmy is drafted and ends up in Fred's troop on his way to Europe. Jimmy becomes vicious with his gun, wins a medal, and weds Fred's nurse girlfriend, Rose. Back home years later, Rose ... See full summary »
W.S. Van Dyke
According to cinematographer Lee Garmes, "I directed about 60-70 per cent of the picture; we'd start at 9:00 a.m. and some days Hecht [Ben Hecht] was there, some days MacArthur [Charles MacArthur]; they'd start working on the picture at eleven a.m.! So they relied on me. They set the style of how they wanted the dialogue done, and I would direct the whole physical side of it." See more »
This rarely seen film was the third one made by Claude Rains, and only his second talkie. It was made just after THE INVISIBLE MAN, which gave Rains one of moviedom's best introductory film roles. So CRIME WITHOUT PASSION was sort of hidden by it's predecessor. This is rather curious because it was an early independent film, and it's creators were Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur (the authors of TWENTIETH CENTURY and THE FRONT PAGE; Mr. MacArthur was also the husband of Helen Hayes). This was the first of two independent films made by them, the other being THE SCOUNDREL, a film about an amoral publisher played by Noel Coward. Both are interesting movies, though neither are above better - than - average. Being relatively cheaply made, their defects are too glaring (special effects are quite modest and...well cheap!).
If people remember CRIME WITHOUT PASSION it is because of an early scene where Rains' clever lawyer wins an acquittal by putting a grandfather clock on the stand (symbolically, of course - it doesn't begin speaking and answering questions). The acting is uneven. Rains is superb, but Margo was always a heavy breathing/heavy speaking actress. Probably, she was available from Broadway productions in nearby Manhattan (the film was shot in the Astoria Paramount Studios).
The role of the crooked "mouthpiece" probably was based on William Fallon, the leading criminal attorney in New York City in the 1920s and 1930s. Fallon frequently won acquittals of notorious gangsters, crooked politicians, and criminals. He was not afraid of going beyond the law - even getting into bribing juries. But he was a gifted attorney when he concentrated on his job (unfortunately he was also a heavy drinker, which destroyed his career and shortened his life). Unlike Rains, however, Fallon never killed anybody.
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