In the first scene at the hotel, the telephone rings to the tune of "Pennsylvania 6-5000", with Fejos (Michael Richards) answering the line as "Transylvania 6-5-0-0-0" to the beat of the tune. See more »
A run of the mill crime thriller about counterfeiters
This is not a film noir per se, though it has some nourish undercurrents and atmosphere. It is a bit of a downer because the lead is a scoundrel, his girl friend is a dolt, and there is not really anyone to admire. Lloyd Bridges plays the lead, and is more or less convincing, though hardly brilliant. But then the part gave him little scope anyway. The dame is Barbara Payton, who is not particularly enthralling. Payton had a terribly tragic life, dying at the age of only 39, after episodes of drug addiction, shop-lifting, and other symptoms of someone who was pretty totally messed-up. This film contains two remarkable and interesting film sequences, both shot on location. The first is inside the US Treasury in Washington, showing money being designed, processed and printed. (No mention of the Federal Reserve, so this is a bit puzzling.) The other is inside the large Los Angeles streetcar depot, where a dramatic chase and shootout take place. Streetcars must have been phased out not long afterwards, so this is rare footage. Bridges plays a jailed counterfeiter who is let out on condition that he exposes the people who are now 'using his plates' to print twenty dollar bills. A bewildering series of double-crosses and turning of tables takes place, all keeping one's attention, what with cops pretending to be crooks, and no one really knowing who is straight and who is not. John Hoyt is in this picture, as he was in so many others. He was a very nice man and did me a big favour when I was young. I was introduced to him by my very good aged friend of those days, Homer Croy, who wrote the Will Rogers movies, as Homer and Hoyt were old chums. Hoyt really did go out of his way to help people and was such a personable and pleasant person. I remember he wore a bow tie and was concerned to look smartly dressed. When I met him I had no idea of his film career, since there were no videos or DVDs in those days and hence no way to see old movies. Homer told me he was a well-known actor, but I had never heard of him at that time, since once a movie was out of the cinemas, it was gone gone gone. Even the stars rarely had cans of 35 mm of their finest work. Everything just disappeared into the vaults of the majors. I'm glad this film is no longer trapped in the vaults, despite its title. It was ably directed by Dick Fleischer and belongs in the canon along with the others.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?