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The Long Night (1947)

 -  Crime | Drama | Film-Noir  -  28 May 1947 (USA)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 867 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 11 critic

Police surround the apartment of apparent murderer Joe Adams, who refuses to surrender although escape appears impossible. During the siege, Joe reflects on the circumstances that led him to this situation.

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Title: The Long Night (1947)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Joe Adams
...
Jo Ann
...
Maximilian the Great
...
Charlene
...
Sheriff Ned Meade
Moroni Olsen ...
Chief of Police Bob McManus
...
Frank Dunlap
Queenie Smith ...
Mrs. Tully
...
Bill Pulanski
...
Policeman Stevens
Melinda Byron ...
Peggy
Davis Roberts ...
Freddie (as Robert A. Davis)
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Storyline

The credits fade onto a blind man tapping his way down the sidewalk,he enters a dingy boarding house and hears a shot fired in one of the upstairs bedrooms. A door opens from audience POV. A man tumbles out of the door and falls, slides and slithers down two flights of stairs and is dead when he hits the bottom. Then follows nearly 100 minutes of flashback and flashbacks-within-flashbacks about a veteran returing from the war, tired and disillusioned, only to find that he girl he loves has lied to him about her relationship with another man, and that man is sadistic, boastful and tauntful. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

COMING AT YOU ... in a blast of terrific drama! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 May 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Time to Kill  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Maximillian joins Jo Ann on the bus, a poster advertising "Dr.Pearce's Baking Powder" - the first commercial cream of tartar baking powder - can be seen behind them. A product that Vincent Price's grandfather became very wealthy as the inventor and marketer of. See more »

Quotes

Maximilian: You know, it's not too easy to kill a man. I ought to know.
See more »

Connections

Remake of Daybreak (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Good King Wenceslas
(uncredited)
Lyrics by John M. Neale
Music: 13th Century folk song
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An amazing performance by Henry Fonda in a neglected near-masterpiece.
4 August 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I can't believe I've been digging into movies for 45 years without ever finding this gem. It's about as noir as it gets, in my book (taking the great definition from one of the guys over at Rara-Avis that hardboiled = tough, while noir = screwed). Henry Fonda is quite astonishing in a role that takes him from average Joe to suicidal killer. I think it's one of his very best performances, and I'm a GREAT admirer of his other performances. Barbara Bel Geddes is mousy but real as the naïve young woman Fonda falls for. The only problem I had with the movie was Vincent Price's performance of an overwritten role. On one hand, it's exactly the kind of role Price normally excels in, but it's far too florid and phony for this kind of film. Watching his scenes with Fonda, it's like watching two movies at the same time--when the camera's on Price, it's "Forever Amber." When the camera's on Fonda, it's "Out of the Past." For the perfect version of this kind of pseudo-über-sophisticate in a noir setting, one need only look to Clifton Webb in "Laura." Webb made that character live and breath. Price orates. With his fey ways and foppish hairdo, he grated on my nerves. The character should very well do so in this film, but to me it was Price and the scripting of his character that were grating. But that's a mere cavil. This is a splendid film, digging as sort of an ancestor to "Blue Velvet" into the rot beneath the seemingly every day--the difference being that most of the people who populate the edges of this movie seem to be very decent and honorable. Anatole Litvak's direction and Sol Polito's brilliant photography surprised me in scene after scene with their classic yet innovative dark style. And crowning it all is Henry Fonda in yet another performance of a lifetime.


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