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Desperate (1947)

6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,088 users  
Reviews: 39 user | 21 critic

A young married couple flee both police and a gangster out for revenge.

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(screenplay), (additional dialogue), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Steve Brodie ...
Audrey Long ...
Mrs. Anne Randall
...
Walt Radak
...
Pete Lavitch - Private Eye
William Challee ...
Reynolds
Jason Robards Sr. ...
Det. Lt. Louie Ferrari (as Jason Robards)
Freddie Steele ...
Shorty Abbott
Lee Frederick ...
Joe Daly
Paul E. Burns ...
Uncle Jan
Ilka Grüning ...
Aunt Klara (as Ilka Gruning)
Edit

Storyline

When mobster Walt Radak tries to trick independent trucker Steve Randall into transporting stolen furs, Steve alerts the police, and Walt's young brother Al is caught and held for a cop-killing. When ruthless Radak tries to extort Steve's help in clearing Al, Steve and his young wife flee for their lives, only to find that the police are also in pursuit. With every man's hand against them, Steve and Anne must repeatedly abandon their temporary refuges. Finally, one midnight, the showdown... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

MURDER at any moment! SUSPENSE... in every step!!!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 May 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Desesperado  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Ferrari and another policeman are right behind Steve when he re-enters the apartment house, but they're nowhere to be seen until after the shootout is over. See more »

Quotes

Woman on Train: [Seeing her husband smiling at Steve and Anne] What's so interesting?
[She brings their son and sits down in the train seat opposite him]
Man on Train: [Referring to Steve and Anne] Honeymooners... I can spot them every time with that happy, silly look on their faces.
Woman on Train: [Knowingly cynical] Hmmm... They'll soon get over that.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A good film-noir, dominated by Raymond Burr
23 December 2002 | by (Padova, Italy) – See all my reviews

"Desperate" is a low-budget but fairly good film-noir. The director Anthony Mann, at the beginning of his career, shows his talent, soon to be consecrated in a sequence of splendid western movies.

The story is simple, but has a steady pace and a good suspense. At times the troubles of the cruelly chased hero and heroine are straightforward, not to say boring, but the movie considerably improves whenever the gangsters are on the screen. All along the film we find an excellent, stylish black and white photography. The waving lamp spreading a dire light on the impassive faces of the criminals, while we hear the off-screen noise of an horrible beating, should be a cult-scene in a more celebrated movie. Another remarkable moment is the brutal intrusion of the gangsters into the rural peace of an amiable old couple. A feeling of violation and fear is created, with no use of visual violence. The final scene, though a bit unrealistic, is masterly filmed and provides a satisfactory ending.

Steve Brodie and Aubrey Long make an adequate job as the couple of the good ones. However, the film is physically dominated by Raymond Burr, with his immense shoulders and his scaring poise. What a great villain he is! Of course, we are also delighted by Burr's side-kicks, with their wonderful gangster-faces.

"Desperate" is recommended for film-noir fans and can be a nice view for anyone fond of good, old-style, accurately-made cinema.


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