A police lt. is ordered to stop investigating deadly crime boss Mr. Brown, because he hasn't been able to get any hard evidence against him. He then goes after Brown's girlfriend who despises him, for information instead.
A down-on-his-luck ex-GI finds himself framed for an armored car robbery. When he's finally released for lack of evidence--after having been beaten up and tortured by the police--he sets out to discover who set him up, and why. The trail leads him into Mexico and a web of hired killers and corrupt cops. Written by
Film noir at its best. All of the positive comments by other reviewers are accurate regarding the acting, directing and appropriately flawed "noir tale" script. John Payne is a textbook noir guy -- just out of prison, tormented, misunderstood and kicked around by the cops (who do not come out smelling good in this story) and a terrible trio of criminals. Add to that extraordinary film noir visual effects. This is exemplary film noir. The framed-in, claustrophobic scenes actually made me short of breath. The scene on the boat at the end is classic, and probably the prototype for subsequent scenes in other movies and TV shows. It reminded me of the Sopranos episode where Tony & Co. killed Big Pussy. The robbers in their creepy masks were so interesting to study that I watched that part several times. It reminded me of Kabuki theater. A real box of candy for noir connoisseurs. I recommend it highly.
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