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In San Francisco, during the 1940s, US Treasury agents interrupt an illicit exchange between a sailor and a drug dealer. During the shootout, the sailor is killed but the drug dealer escapes. Later on,the agents pick up the trail of the fugitive drug dealer but arrive at his apartment too late. The dealer lays dead, permanently silenced by a hired hit-man. The only thing the agents have is an address book found on the dead drug dealer's body. Among the clues there is one that seems to be promising: the address of a shady Canadian trading company based in Vancouver. Treasury agent George Morton decides to visit a convict in Alcatraz and solicit his help in infiltrating the underworld. Morton knows that convincing the imprisoned criminal Johnny Evans to become a stool pigeon for the Feds won't be easy. But Evans is Morton's only hope to infiltrate the underworld and crack the case. Written by
Howard Duff (Morton) goes undercover to bust a drug gang. However, he needs the help of his former friend Dan Duryea (Johnny Evans) who he has condemned to a life in prison. The two men do not get on with each other. Duryea helps Morton get a new identity and they then have to work as a team to infiltrate a powerful gang of heroin dealers. They make the necessary contacts but they are treated with suspicion, especially by luxury ranch owner John McIntire (Nick Avery). Can they keep their word to each other and stick together?
This is a quick moving film that also stars a young Tony Curtis as a mute bodyguard/hit-man. All the cast do well with Dan Duryea being especially likable as a criminal who doesn't like cops. I have to admire his underhand ways as demonstrated when Duff doesn't allow him to go to the bar to meet Shelley Winters (Terry). Duryea takes advantage of a visit by McIntire to pick up his jacket and let Duff know that he's going to the bar by just walking out of the room leaving Duff powerless to do or say anything infront of a guest. We then see him sitting with Winters and enjoying himself. Good for him nice move, Duryea! He plays by his own rules and keeps the viewer guessing as to whether or not he is going to betray Duff.
It's filmed on location in San Francisco and Arizona and has an ending that had me cheering!
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