A New York City detective, traveling by train between New York and Baltimore, tries to foil an on-board plot to assassinate President-elect Abraham Lincoln before he reaches Baltimore to give a major pre-Inauguration speech in 1861.
Joe Norson, a poor letter carrier with a sweet, pregnant wife, yields to momentary temptation and steals $30,000 belonging to a pair of ruthless blackmailers who won't stop at murder. After a few days of soul-searching, Joe offers to return the money, only to find that the "friend" he left it with has absconded. Now every move Joe makes plunges him deeper into trouble, as he's pursued and pursuing through the shadowy, sinister side of New York. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This movie begins like the TV series Naked City (1958) and is even set in New York City. Harry Bellaver, who plays "Larry" in this movie, played Det. Frank Arcaro in the "Naked City" series. See more »
Capt. Walter Anderson:
New York City: an architectural jungle where fabulous wealth and the deepest squalor live side by side. New York is the busiest, the loneliest, the kindest, and the cruelest of cities - a murder a day, every day of the year and each murder will wind up on my deak.
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"Side Street" is a stylish, if convoluted murder mystery about a failed small-time business man (Joe Norson) who is tempted into committing a robbery. Unfortunately the money he takes belongs to a couple of ruthless blackmailers, who aren't impressed when Joe offers to return it - mainly because the "friend" he left it with for safe-keeping helped himself to it. From then on, everything Joe tries gets him deeper into trouble.
Over-long and over-complicated, but competently made and in best film noir style makes good use of light and shade. Conveys well the general seediness and desperation of small-timers trying to make the big time in New York.
Very watchable, not least for Jean Hagen as the vamp who sets the guys up.
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