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An American realtor living in England is dissatisfied with what he believes to be his humdrum life. One weekend while his wife is out of town, he gives a ride to a woman he sees stranded on the road. One thing leads to another, and he soon finds himself enmeshed in a plot involving a diamond robbery, gangsters and murder. Written by
IMPULSE is another typical British crime film, one that plays out in a very low key way and which features an imported American star in order to bring American audiences in. This time around it's a permanently stressed out Arthur Kennedy, playing a happily married man who decides to embark on a dalliance when his wife goes away for the weekend.
His problems begin when he helps a stranded woman who turns out to be a femme fatale played by Constance Smith, whose real life was more torrid and tragic than any movie. Smith is excellent, by the way, and gives the best performance in the movie. Kennedy finds himself obsessed by her, but he doesn't know that she's involved with some ruthless criminals who think nothing of committing murder to get their way.
Before long the film settles in the typical Tempean Films format, with a lone hero, the attractive women helping and hindering him, the thugs seeking to kill him, and the police always one step behind. It's rather undistinguished stuff that lacks a decent storyline to see it through and I was bored more often than not. Cyril Chamberlain's weary cop encapsulates the audience's mood on this one. Watch out for a youthful Kenneth Cope making his debut film appearance early on.
I just wanted to correct one of the other reviewers on this sight: Charles de la Tour is not the pen name of Cy Endfield. He was a director in his own right who had children, one of whom is RISING DAMP actress Frances de la Tour. Something that would be rather impossible if he didn't actually exist!
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