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Road House (1948)

Passed  -  Action | Drama | Film-Noir  -  22 September 1948 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 1,225 users  
Reviews: 36 user | 19 critic

A night club owner becomes infatuated with a torch singer and frames his best friend/manager for embezzlement when the chanteuse falls in love with him.

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(screen play), (story), 4 more credits »
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Title: Road House (1948)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Pete Morgan
...
Susie Smith
...
Jefferson T. 'Jefty' Robbins
O.Z. Whitehead ...
Arthur
Robert Karnes ...
Mike
George Beranger ...
Lefty
Ian MacDonald ...
Police Captain
Grandon Rhodes ...
Judge
Edit

Storyline

Jefty, owner of a roadhouse in a backwoods town, hires sultry, tough-talking torch singer Lily Stevens against the advice of his manager Pete Morgan. Jefty is smitten with Lily, who in turn exerts her charms on the more resistant Pete. When Pete finally falls for her and she turns down Jefty's marriage proposal, they must face Jefty's murderous jealousy and his twisted plots to "punish" the two. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 September 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jeftys bar  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ida Lupino was paid $95,000 for her role. See more »

Quotes

Susie: She does more without a voice than anybody I've ever heard!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Inventing the Abbotts (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Again
(uncredited)
Music by Lionel Newman
Lyrics by Dorcas Cochran
Sung by Ida Lupino
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Tommy Udo in the Nightclub Business
9 December 2005 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Following up his sensational movie debut in Kiss of Death, Richard Widmark got another psychopathic role in Road House. His characterization of Jefty, the owner of a road house in the rural middle west near the Canadian border, is Tommy Udo once again, right down to the maniacal giggle. Good thing for Widmark he got out of that typecasting as soon as he could.

The actors have to be good here because the story as some real big holes in it. Richard Widmark owns the Road House and his World War II buddy Cornel Wilde manages it. Widmark on a trip to Chicago hires a singer, Ida Lupino at a good deal beyond the normal rate. Of course Widmark has other things on his mind for Lupino.

But it's Wilde that Lupino falls for and when they tell Widmark, he goes psycho on them, but in a coldblooded maniacal sort of way. He frames Wilde for embezzlement and then successfully pleads with the judge to suspend the sentence and commit Wilde on parole to Widmark's charge. The rest I won't say.

Celeste Holm is in this film and I'm not sure what her function is other than to be a witness for Wilde and Lupino in the end. But worse than that she's a musical performer who could have been a believable singer. Ida Lupino croaked her numbers out like a bullfrog. The woman, talented actress that she was, could not sing.

The song Again was introduced in Road House and if it could become a hit with Lupino's croaky singing of it, it must be a great song.

A key piece of evidence also turns up rather conveniently in the end to destroy Widmark's nefarious scheme. A piece of evidence that should have been destroyed months ago as a matter of course. I won't say more.

And I also cannot believe that Wilde would have agreed to the parole conditions. Where was his lawyer?

Despite all the holes in this plot, the characterizations of Wilde and Lupino caught in a psychotic's jealous rage ring true. And Richard Widmark was a psychotic for the ages.

Fans of the above players and I'm one of them should see this film. I wish these four had been given a better script.


14 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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