A renowned and relentless Paris detective takes his first vacation in eleven years at a small inn in the French countryside. There he meets and falls in love with the hotelier's daughter, ... See full summary »
Joseph H. Lewis
A telephone repairman in Los Angeles uses his knowledge of electronics to help a bookie set up a betting operation. When the bookie is murdered, the greedy technician takes over his business. He ruthlessly climbs his way to the top of the local crime syndicate, but then gangsters from a big East Coast mob show up wanting a piece of his action. Written by
"Boulder Dam" is actually Hoover Dam. Congress authorized the Boulder Canyon Dam Project in 1931 and, it being traditional to name big federal dam projects after the sitting President, named it Hoover Dam. Franklin D. Roosevelt defeated Herbert Hoover in 1932 but could not officially change the name set by Congress. Harold Ickes (FDR's Interior Secretary), however, issued a memo directing that his employees "...will refer to the dam as 'Boulder Dam' in this pamphlet as well as in correspondence and other references...." In 1947, after Roosevelt and Ickes had died, Congress passed a resolution to "restore" the name of Hoover Dam. Until that time, however, all official, tourist and other promotional materials called it "Boulder Dam." The public's recognition with the old name was still apparent in the movie (released in 1950) through the script and the highway signage seen en route. See more »
After Larry's funeral, after Mal and Gail talk to Carl Stephans and they walk away, the whole filming crew is reflected on the door of Carl's black car. See more »
The following title card appears on screen right before the start of the opening credits: "Because of the disclosures made in this film, powerful underworld interests tried to halt production with threats of violence and reprisal. It was only through the armed protection provided by members of the Police Department in the locales where the picture was filmed, that this story was able to reach the screen. To these men, and to the U.S. Rangers at Boulder Dam, we are deeply grateful." See more »
How the information highway leads straight to hell
The address of Edmond O'Brien's posh Malibu digs -- 711 Ocean Drive -- lends the title to this semidocumentary noir about bookmaking. Unfortunately the movie is bookended by sermons instructing viewers on their civic responsibilities: the two bucks you put on a horse go straight to graft and murder! In between, it's not bad. O'Brien, always better supporting than, as here, in the lead, is a money-grubbing telephone technician who brings his electronic expertise to the illegal-betting circuit. The profits his innovations generate oil his swift climb up the syndicate ladder; his ruthlessness greases his slide down. Along the way, the movie casually includes what may be the first Hollywood episode of severe wife-battering, perpetrated on Joanne Dru. At the end, O'Brien's grasping ambitions are dwarfed by the enormity of Boulder Dam, and viewers are left with a sense of his brief notoriety being but a single cog in a vast, unstoppable crime machine. It's a dated message in a time when, increasingly, gambling with the government's blessing has become the new civic responsibility.
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