Beautiful Mary returns to her small hometown after many years from Chicago wearing a mink coat and carrying an expensive cigarette case. Her arrival causes long standing enmities to surface between two of her old boyfriends, Kenny Veech, a loafing gambler, and debonair Lew Lentz, owner of a local nightclub. Their deep-seated animosity repeatedly results in antagonism and fights as they compete for Mary's affections. Kenny's friend Gitlo, a bartender in Lentz' club, enlists Kenny in an aborted plan to rob Lentz of $15,000 in profits from sponsoring a local carnival. Lentz retaliates by framing both men for murder. Written by
Gabe Taverney (email@example.com)
Mack Gray, who plays the replacement bartender, was an old friend of Raft's and his film career consisted mostly of cameos in Raft films. See more »
This is a private party!
I just thought I could do something for you, sonny.
Yeah! You can give me a cigarette.
[after he does]
Now you can light it!
[he pauses and lights his cigarette]
Now you've got all you want. You better go! I don't want you hanging around here! The next time won't be so sociable!
If you said that with a smile, it'd sound better.
[...] See more »
This turkey came as an entry in a set of eight noir DVD's. I almost returned the set on the basis of this single movie. Leonard Maltin's Film Guide charitably characterizes the 82 minutes as "stupid". In my little book, that's too generous. From the cheap sets, to the slack direction, to the incoherent script, the movie's nearly laughable, especially when a zombified 51- year old George Raft deadpans sweet nothings into the luscious ear of 24-year old Ava Gardner. It's enough to make you want to call the cops or check your eyeglasses. And that's when Raft's not playing the wayward son of parents maybe 10 years closer to retirement than he is. If he could show a little emotion, he might get away with it, but you almost have to stick a fork in him to make sure he's breathing. Raft doesn't so much walk through the part as blankly stare his way through. No wonder the script turns to McLaglen to carry the action through the last third. And the miscasting doesn't stop with Raft. The sleekly urbane Tom Conway of British accent fame is cast as a small town hood, no less. It's as if both Conway and Raft got confused about which movie they were supposed to be in, and wandered onto the wrong set. Of course, there's the compensation of a ravishing Gardner for the guys, and in a flimsy dressing gown, no less. Too bad, her ability to do anything with the muddled script sort of comes and goes. The sometimes brilliant Philip Yordan's name is on the screenplay, but I can't believe it's actually his. The plot simply meanders all over the page like a bottle of spilled ink. There's no need to go on. This may be somebody's idea of noir, but the shovel has to scrape bottom to find it. Too bad mine did.
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