Gambler John Merrick (Frank Lovejoy) is the head of a bookie syndicate and the newspaper is crusading against him and the rackets, primarily because Merrick is in love with Felice Stuart (... See full summary »
Chris Hunter kills an intruder and tells her husband and lawyer it was an act of self-defense. It's later revealed that he was actually her lover and she had posed for an incriminating ... See full summary »
Sheila Page, a Broadway star, shoots Barney, her murderous husband on New Year's Eve. She flees her apartment and goes to her Producer, John Friday. When she arrives, it is New Year's day, ... See full summary »
Unscrupulous showgirl Flaxy Martin involves young attorney Walter Colby with mobster Hap Richie. A girl is murdered, with the evidence pointing to Flaxy, and Colby takes the rap and gets a ... See full summary »
Richard L. Bare
Nitrate prints of this film are held by the UCLA Film and Television Archives. See more »
Just for Now
Written by Dick Redmond
Played when Laurie first enters her bungalow and occasionally in the score
Played on piano and briefly sung by Alexis Smith at Sam's Cafe
Also performed by Alexis Smith at the Pelican Club See more »
Routine boxing melodrama stars Dane Clark as John Garfield wannabe
Shake together John Garfield's roles as a violinist in Humoresque and a prizefighter in Body and Soul (hits of the previous couple of years), and out comes Dane Clark's character in Whiplash. He's a beach bum who daubs canvases in a coastal town near San Francisco. But when reclusive vacationer Alexis Smith buys one of his seascapes, she ignites a torch in him that won't sputter out. When she abruptly departs, he travels east and sets up a studio in New York while he tracks her down. It proves a bad career move.
He finds Smith singing in a nightclub, only to discover that she's married to Zachary Scott, its owner and a former middleweight champ now confined to a wheelchair. Scott, sadistic and embittered, lives the fight game vicariously through the cohort of ex-boxers who keep his wife in place and through new talent he exploits then drops. In Clark, he sees a contender. Wanting to keep close to Smith (who keeps warning him off), Clark signs up for work on another kind of canvas....
In addition to the always welcome Alexis Smith, the movie boasts good supporting work from Eve Arden, a gal pal with a crush on Clark, and from Jeffrey Lynn, as Smith's alcoholic brother, a doctor working in Scott's gym. Scott himself brings nothing new to the kind of part he found himself typecast in: the effete, insinuating villain. That leaves Clark, who was plainly being groomed as the second-string Garfield but who never left much of an impression on the movies.
The direction, by the undistinguished Lewis Seiler, can only be graded adequate; he keeps things moving along but never tries for anything different or offbeat or striking. In this he's matched by a lackluster script (it was the late 40s; couldn't the dialogue have been a little more etched?). Nonetheless, Whiplash endures as a routine B-movie, with noirish coloration, that reflects the themes and plot-lines of post-war melodrama.
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