7.5/10
3,065
51 user 24 critic

No Way Out (1950)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | October 1950 (USA)
A black doctor is assigned to treat two racist White, robbery suspects who are brothers, and when one dies, it causes tension that could start a race riot.
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

George Taylor returns from WWII with amnesia. Back home in Los Angeles, while trying to track down his old identity, he stumbles onto a 3-year old murder case and a hunt for a missing $2 million.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: John Hodiak, Nancy Guild, Lloyd Nolan
5 Fingers (1952)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

During WWII the valet to the British Ambassador to Ankara sells British secrets to the Germans while trying to romance a refugee Polish countess.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: James Mason, Danielle Darrieux, Michael Rennie
Kiss of Death (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

With his law-breaking lifestyle in the past, an ex-con, along with his family, attempt to start a new life, knowing a betrayed someone from the past is bound to see otherwise.

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Victor Mature, Brian Donlevy, Coleen Gray
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

After years in prison, Max promises revenge on his brothers for their betrayal. His lover Irene and memories of his past yield him a broader perspective.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Susan Hayward, Richard Conte
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A doctor and a policeman in New Orleans have only 48 hours to locate a killer infected with pneumonic plague.

Director: Elia Kazan
Stars: Richard Widmark, Paul Douglas, Barbara Bel Geddes
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A covert FBI agent infiltrates a ruthless gangster mob, but his life is at risk from a mysterious informant who funnels inside information to the hoodlums.

Director: William Keighley
Stars: Mark Stevens, Richard Widmark, Lloyd Nolan
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A letter is addressed to three wives from their "best friend" Addie Ross, announcing that she is running away with one of their husbands...but she does not say which one.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Jeanne Crain, Linda Darnell, Ann Sothern
Crime | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A small-time grifter and nightclub tout takes advantage of some fortuitous circumstances and tries to become a big-time player as a wrestling promoter.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Richard Widmark, Gene Tierney, Googie Withers
Criss Cross (1949)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An armored truck driver and his lovely ex-wife conspire with a gang to have his own truck robbed on the route.

Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Yvonne De Carlo, Dan Duryea
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A new English teacher at a violent, unruly inner-city school is determined to do his job, despite resistance from both students and faculty.

Director: Richard Brooks
Stars: Glenn Ford, Anne Francis, Louis Calhern
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Rough city cop Jim Wilson is disciplined by his captain and is sent upstate, to a snowy mountain town, to help the local sheriff solve a murder case.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Ida Lupino
Stars: Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan, Ward Bond
Go Man Go (1954)
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of Abe Saperstein and the creation of the Harlem Globetrotters.

Director: James Wong Howe
Stars: Dane Clark, Patricia Breslin, Sidney Poitier
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Mildred Joanne Smith ...
Cora Brooks
...
...
Dots Johnson ...
Edit

Storyline

The Biddle brothers, shot while robbing a gas station, are taken to the prison ward of the County Hospital; Ray Biddle, a rabid racist, wants no treatment from black resident Dr. Luther Brooks. When brother John dies while Luther tries to save him, Ray is certain it's murder and becomes obsessed with vengeance. But there are black racists around too, and the situation slides rapidly toward violence. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Is it a question ...or an answer


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Release Date:

October 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der Haß ist blind  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Richard Widmark was apparently very uncomfortable with some of the racist comments his character, Ray Biddle, made, especially given his friendship with Sidney Poitier. As a result, after some of the takes involving particularly venomous remarks, Widmark actually apologized to Poitier for the remarks his character had made. See more »

Goofs

After Dr. Brooks retrieves the spinal tap tray from the cabinet and heads back to the ward where Ray and George Biddle are being treated, the shadow of the boom microphone can be briefly seen on the wall upper left on the screen. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Dan Wharton: My point is you got out.
Edie Johnson - Mrs. John Biddle: Five blocks away.
Dr. Dan Wharton: Five million blocks, what's the difference? You hate Beaver Canal; you hate what it stands for.
Edie Johnson - Mrs. John Biddle: You talk like I was a poet or a professor. I found open a manhole and I crawled out of a sewer, wouldn't anybody?
Dr. Dan Wharton: Ray Biddle wouldn't. He likes Beaver Canal; he likes what it stands for.
Edie Johnson - Mrs. John Biddle: I don't even know what that means: "stands for"? There's no difference in people except the size of their tips. A drunk is a drunk and a pass is a pass if it comes from a ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox logo appears without its familiar fanfare. Instead, the film's music theme begins when the logo is displayed. See more »

Connections

Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.21 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Tiger Rag
(uncredited)
Written by Nick LaRocca, Edwin B. Edwards, Henry Ragas, Tony Sbarbaro, and Larry Shields (aka The Original Dixieland Jazz Band)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Intelligent, Groundbreaking Film
20 March 2005 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

After watching this film on television a couple weeks ago (TMC is the best), I was surprised how obscure 'No Way Out' really is. However, I wasn't exactly surprised.

The film follows Dr. Brooks (Sidney Poitier), an ER doctor whose first real-world experience is as intern in the prison ward of a New York hospital. While on duty, the brothers Biddle (the older of which is played by Richard Widmark), come in following a confrontation with the police. Both suffer from superficial injuries, but the younger brother's health is declining rapidly due to what Brooks diagnoses as a brain tumor. The kid dies while Brooks is operating, feet away from his brother. The racist Ray Biddle soon accuses Brooks of murder, but won't allow an autopsy to be conducted on his brother to determine the cause of death.

Poitier turns in a great performance as the hard-working young doctor, who is debased by the hollow accusations of a bigot. They dig at his core and bring up insecurities that would be common to anyone in the medical field, but are aggravated by the pure hatred of Widmark's equally well-played character.

While the script borders on stereotypes at times, you have to remember that these stereotypes were very real during the time it was written. The writer does a fantastic job of adding depth, personality, beyond the paper figures. Brooks is a practical man, who supports his family and tries to not let the circumstances bring him down. Behind the veneer of hatred, Biddle is a deeply insecure and misguided man who has let circumstance blacken his core. Mankiewicz and Samuels do an amazing job at bringing life to a situation that was taboo for the time.

Aside from the competent acting and well-executed script, the film featured a moving and well-choreographed race riot that fully captures the raw hatred that can surface between groups of people who face the same everyday problems and circumstances, but are torn by one difference (color, or creed, or religion).

This is definitely a film well worth seeing. For its time, the movie was groundbreaking for its portrayal of both racists and their victims. While today the movie may seem tame, it undoubtedly struck some sensitive nerves during its release. The film deserves to be more widely known, if only for its content.


39 of 41 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?