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 <email@example.com>
In the original version of the story Luther was hideously slaughtered, but Darryl F. Zanuck changed his mind because he believed that ending would leave the audience with a "feeling of utter futility." See more »
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 »
A very effective and engrossing racial drama, with standout performances by Sidney Poitier and Richard Widmark. Widmark, in particular, tears up the screen with his harrowing portrayal of a pathologically obsessed racist; he is almost frightening to watch. The script keeps the action moving along briskly, in edge-of-the seat mode. Still effective, for a film half-a-century old.
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