During the campaign for reelection, the crooked politician Paul Madvig decides to clean up his past, refusing the support of the gangster Nick Varna and associating to the respectable ... See full summary »
During the campaign for reelection, the crooked politician Paul Madvig decides to clean up his past, refusing the support of the gangster Nick Varna and associating to the respectable reformist politician Ralph Henry. When Ralph's son, Taylor Henry, a gambler and the lover of Paul's sister Opal, is murdered, Paul's right arm, Ed Beaumont, finds his body on the street. Nick uses the financial situation of The Observer to force the publisher Clyde Matthews to use the newspaper to raise the suspicion that Paul Madvig might have killed Taylor. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Many of the set elements used in the Clyde Matthews' summer house were from the "Holiday Inn" house, on which production closed about three weeks earlier. They were used again weeks later in "I Married A Witch", which also was produced by Paramount but released through United Artists. See more »
In Farr's office, when Ed is slowly tucking the anonymous letter in his inside pocket, Farr tells him he expects a visit from Nick. The camera is on Ed who abruptly takes his hand out of his inside pocket and turns to Farr, but then the camera cuts to show both him and Farr and he's still tucking the letter in his inside pocket. See more »
[to Janet Henry]
I get along very well with Paul because he's on the dead up-and-up. Why don't *you* try it sometime?
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This "Key" Is Hard To Fit, But It Does If You Persist
This is one of a handful of films I kept giving chances to like and finally did on the third viewing. Maybe I expected too much on the first viewing, when I first began to appreciate film noir and had become a fan of Veronica Lake. In The Glass Key, though, Lake didn't have her usual snappy dialog, and that was one of the disappointments, along with too-confusing a storyline.
By the third viewing, I guess I finally understood what was going on in this Dashielle Hammet story. Hammet's stories weren't always the easiest to understand.
Even with knowing what to expect, William Bendix in this film still is so brutal in here he almost makes me uncomfortable. Well, he DOES make me uncomfortable. He plays one of the meanest, sadistic thugs I have ever seen on film and one of his punches literally knocked out Alan Ladd when they were filming this.
Brian Donlevy is perhaps the best character in here as the slightly-corrupt politician. It's an okay Ladd-Lake film but nothing special. If you're a collector of film noir, then you should have it, but don't expect the zip in here that the other Ladd-Lake noirs possessed.
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