MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 22,808 this week

Force of Evil (1948)

TV-PG  |   |  Crime, Film-Noir, Drama  |  25 December 1948 (USA)
7.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 3,910 users  
Reviews: 50 user | 45 critic

An unethical lawyer, with an older brother he wants to help, becomes a partner with a client in the numbers racket.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

10 Best Back-to-School TV Shows

Dust off your varsity jacket and get excited for fall with our list of the 10 best back-to-school TV shows.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 35 titles
created 19 May 2011
 
a list of 38 titles
created 02 Jun 2013
 
a list of 49 titles
created 10 months ago
 
list image
a list of 45 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 49 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Force of Evil" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Force of Evil (1948)

Force of Evil (1948) on IMDb 7.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Force of Evil.

User Polls

1 win. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Gun Crazy (1950)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A well meaning crack shot husband is pressured by his beautiful marksman wife to go on an interstate robbery spree, where he finds out just how depraved and deadly she really is.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: John Dall, Peggy Cummins, Berry Kroeger
I Walk Alone (1948)
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frankie Madison leaves prison expecting a share from his ex-partner. But Prohibition bootlegging didn't prepare Frankie for Big Business.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Lizabeth Scott, Kirk Douglas
Detour (1945)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Chance events trap hitch-hiker Al Roberts in a tightening net of film noir trouble.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Tom Neal, Ann Savage, Claudia Drake
Caught (1949)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

It was Leonora Eames' childhood dream come true. She had married Smith Ohlrig, a man worth millions. But her innocent dream became a nightmare once she realizes the truth about her husband ... See full summary »

Director: Max Ophüls
Stars: James Mason, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Ryan
Raw Deal (1948)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Joe Sullivan is itching to get out of prison. He's taken the rap for Rick, who owes him $50 Grand. Rick sets up an escape for Joe, knowing that Joe will be caught escaping and be shot or ... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Claire Trevor, Marsha Hunt
T-Men (1947)
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Two US Treasury agents hunt a successful counterfeiting ring.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Wallace Ford, Alfred Ryder
The Big Combo (1955)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A police lt. is ordered to stop investigating deadly crime boss Mr. Brown, because he hasn't been able to get any hard evidence against him. He then goes after Brown's girlfriend who despises him, for information instead.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: Richard Conte, Jean Wallace, Cornel Wilde
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A married woman and a drifter fall in love, then plot to murder her husband... but even once the deed is done, they must live with the consequences of their actions.

Director: Tay Garnett
Stars: Lana Turner, John Garfield, Cecil Kellaway
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A pickpocket unwittingly lifts a message destined for enemy agents and becomes a target for a Communist spy ring.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In Brooklyn, fishing is the hobby of the workers Jonah Goodwin and Olaf Johnson and they use to fish every night in their old boat. Jonah's daughter is the twenty-one year-old telephone ... See full summary »

Director: Anatole Litvak
Stars: Ida Lupino, John Garfield, Thomas Mitchell
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Embittered after serving time for a burglary he did not commit, Joe Bell is soon back in jail, on a prison farm. His love for the foreman's daughter leads to a fight between them, leading ... See full summary »

Director: Lewis Seiler
Stars: John Garfield, Priscilla Lane, Alan Hale
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Dr. Michael Lewis treats Jane, a mysterious woman claiming to be a British secret agent on the run from German spies. Ultimately convinced, Michael helps Jane escape and with her attempts ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Florey
Stars: John Garfield, Nancy Coleman, Raymond Massey
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Edna Tucker
Howland Chamberlain ...
Freddie Bauer (as Howland Chamberlin)
...
Ben Tucker
...
Bill Ficco
Stanley Prager ...
Wally
Barry Kelley ...
Det. Egan
Paul McVey ...
Hobe Wheelock
Beatrice Pearson ...
Doris Lowry
Edit

Storyline

Lawyer Joe Morse wants to consolidate all the small-time numbers racket operators into one big powerful operation. But his elder brother Leo is one of these small-time operators who wants to stay that way, preferring not to deal with the gangsters who dominate the big-time. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Film-Noir | Drama

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tucker's People  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was selected to the National Film Registry, Library of Congress, in 1994. See more »

Goofs

During a climactic montage set at an East Coast racetrack on the Fourth of July, people in the stock footage crowd scenes are dressed in winter garments nobody would wear in the middle of summer. See more »

Quotes

Edna Tucker: You're wide open, Joe. I can see into you without looking.
Joe Morse: Don't bother; besides it's not nice to do.
Edna Tucker: More interesting than when you have a rock for a husband like mine. He's a stone, that man. Whole world are rocks and stones to him.
Joe Morse: Why tell me? Tell him.
Edna Tucker: Never tell him anything. Makes me feel unnecessary.
Joe Morse: If I make you feel NECESSARY then I'm making a mistake.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Red Hollywood (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

String Quartet opus 131, no. 14: Ist Movement
(uncredited)
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Influential Film
2 February 2006 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The VHS version I own of Force of Evil is one with a forward by Martin Scorsese. In it Scorsese says that this film was the first one that depicted a world he knew, growing up in New York City. Scorses was mesmerized by it as a kid and studied it frame by frame as when he grew up. He pays tribute to Force of Evil saying that you can see the influence of it Mean Streets, Raging Bull, and Goodfellas.

Of course the fact that the film was shot totally on location in scintillating black and white noir in New York City, gave it a dimension that no other noir films have, save possibly Night and the City which was also shot on location in London.

John Garfield who was as quintessential a New Yorker as you could get plays Joe Morse, smooth lawyer for a big time racketeer Roy Roberts who is looking to either take over or muscle out the small time policy banks in the numbers racket. One of those banks is owned by Garfield's brother, Thomas Gomez.

Garfield is as ruthless as Roberts, but with a velvet glove. He tries to get Gomez to go along with the syndicate, but Gomez balks. There's also a prosecutor looking into the numbers racket and a tapped phone which figures prominently in the climax.

Given the leftwing polemics of both the star and director Abraham Polonsky, Force of Evil got the attention of the ultra rightwing House Un American Activities Committee. Polonsky was blacklisted for over 20 years and Garfield died under the strain of the investigation.

Given what has happened to the Soviet Union, I wonder if Garfield and Polonsky were alive today what they would say and how they would feel about their work here. It's interesting to speculate.

But as entertainment Force of Evil is a great success and that is the first rule of film. Also look for a good performance by Marie Windsor as Roberts's wife with a yen for Garfield. One of her first femme fatale roles and one of her best.


12 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
So Over Rated - Garfield Too ! cal_wad
The Numbers Racket robveal
trick to get 776 pzanardo
Ileana Douglas and Marie Windsor voacor
An underrated noir gem Mod1911
The cinematography Noir-It-All
Discuss Force of Evil (1948) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?