A private eye escapes his past to run a gas station in a small town, but his past catches up with him. Now he must return to the big city world of danger, corruption, double crosses and duplicitous dames.
Screenwriter Dixon Steele, faced with the odious task of scripting a trashy bestseller, has hat-check girl Mildred Atkinson tell him the story in her own words. Later that night, Mildred is murdered and Steele is a prime suspect; his record of belligerence when angry and his macabre sense of humor tell against him. Fortunately, lovely neighbor Laurel Gray gives him an alibi. Laurel proves to be just what Steele needed, and their friendship ripens into love. Will suspicion, doubt, and Steele's inner demons come between them? Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
When Edmund H. North adapted the story, he stuck close to the original source and John Derek was considered for the role of Dix, because in the novel he was much younger. North's treatment was not used, and Andrew Solt developed the screenplay with regular input from producer Robert Lord and director Nicholas Ray. The end result is quite different from the source novel. Solt claimed that Humphrey Bogart loved the script so much that he wanted to make it without revisions - Solt maintains that the final cut is very close to his script - but further research shows that Ray made regular re-writes, some added on the day of shooting. In fact, only four pages of the 140 page script had no revisions. See more »
When he stands up after falling in Dixon's apartment, Charles has his jacket and tie untidy, and the top and middle buttons of his jacket are fastened. In the following shot when he is embracing Dixon, his jacket and tie are completely neat and only the top button is fastened. See more »
One of Nicholas Ray's best movies with brilliant performances from Bogart and Grahame.
Nicholas Ray is a director who has almost been forgotten these days, despite making brilliant movies like 'They Live By Night', 'On Dangerous Ground', 'Johnny Guitar' and 'Rebel Without A Cause', and numbering Martin Scorsese and Wim Wenders among his fans (the latter even gave him a small role in his 'The American Friend'). 'In A Lonely Place' could be Ray's best. It's a fascinating movie that mixes drama, suspense and romance in a very interesting way. You could call it Noir I suppose, but it's a very difficult movie to tie down. Humphrey Bogart plays a bitter, hard drinking and frequently violent screen writer who becomes a murder suspect when a young girl (Martha Stewart) is killed. Gloria Grahame ('Crossfire', 'The Big Set Up') is a neighbour who supplies him with an alibi. This odd way of meeting leads into a romance. At first everything is wonderful, and Bogart is even writing again, but bit by bit Grahame starts to see his dark side and begins to fear him, even suspecting that he may have been involved in the murder after all. I don't think I've ever seen Bogart better. It's a terrific performance, and while his character can be charming at times he's also surprisingly unlikeable and intense (we are told he broke an old girlfriend's nose, for example. Imagine Mel Gibson or Brad Pitt doing that in a movie today and still being the romantic lead!). Grahame pulls off a difficult role too, being torn between love and terror. They both make a great team. Such a pity they never worked together after this. I also liked Frank Lovejoy ('House Of Wax', 'The Hitch-Hiker') who plays Bogart's cop buddy. 'In A Lonely Place' is a movie not to be overlooked. I thought it was superb entertainment.
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