In the bordertown of San Pablo, preparing for an annual 'Mexican Fiesta,' arrives Gagin: tough, mysterious and laconic. His mission: to find the equally mysterious Frank Hugo, evidently for... See full summary »
In the bordertown of San Pablo, preparing for an annual 'Mexican Fiesta,' arrives Gagin: tough, mysterious and laconic. His mission: to find the equally mysterious Frank Hugo, evidently for revenge; or is it blackmail? FBI agent Retz is also after the elusive Hugo. Everyone in town is enigmatic, especially Pila, a mystical teenager who follows Gagin around and has premonitions of his death. Also involved are a classic femme fatale and an antique carousel with a pink horse... Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Although the story is set in a New Mexico border town, it was filmed in northern New Mexico. Early in the movie, Robert Montgomery is standing next to a large wall map in a bus terminal, and it is indeed a map of the Albuquerque and Santa Fe area. See more »
I saw this film when I was a young boy when it first came out in 1947 but didn't truly appreciate it till I saw it on TCM the other night again. I agree with all your commentators as to its enigmatic mystery and its possible shortfalls attributable to Montgomery vis a vis Bogart. I found the dialogue and the monologues gripping. In later looking this movie up here I discovered why: the script was by Ben Hecht (of Front Page fame). No wonder it was so great. As many of your commentators point out (and very perceptively too) the individual performances of Gomez, Hendrix, Clark, etc. were all splendid, not to forget Montgomery himself. But TCM must have edited the film or else I fell asleep watching it: I definitely did not see Gomez being beaten up by anyone while being watched by uncomprehending children. That part was definitely not in the version that I watched, sad to say. One of the strongest parts of the film was the disillusionment and cynicism expressed by the Montgomery character against patriotism, and WWII and its profiteers in typical film-noir fashion. Also strikingly evocative and disturbing was the final scene in which the innocent-appearing and passive Hendrix character finally opens up to her friends and re-enacts the events of the film in a vivacious and cynical way to show her friends how sophisticated she is after all. What a dash of cold water in the face of those who expected a romantic ending between two such repressed characters who made a specialty out of never showing their emotions. A great, great movie.
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