Peter, a WW II 'displaced person' about to be deported jumps ship in New York harbor in an effort to find an ex-G.I named Tom whom he helped during the war and can prove Peter's right to ... See full summary »
Horace Vendig shows himself to the world as a rich philanthropist. In fact, the history of his rise from his unhappy broken home shows this to be far from the case. After being taken in by ... See full summary »
Capt. Russ Edwards commands a helicopter rescue unit that fly wounded soldiers out of battle areas and rescue pilots who have to ditch their aircraft. He has a problem with one of his men, ... See full summary »
Herbert L. Strock
Questioned as a murder suspect, solid (but drunk) citizen Al Willis attacks his police questioners, is beaten, and swears vengeance against them. Next night, Lieut. Parks is murdered; Willis is the only suspect in the eyes of tough Chief Conroy, who pursues him doggedly despite lack of evidence. The obsessed Conroy is dismissed from the force, but continues to harass Willis, who flees to a sleazy town on the Mexican border. Of course, Conroy follows. But which is crazy, Conroy or Willis? Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Hayden, Grahame can't salvage tired plate of noir leftovers
The Naked Alibi wastes some potentially terrific talents by forcing them into last-ditch, half-hearted retreads of characters and situations that had already, by 1954 and halfway down the leeward slope of the noir cycle, been done to death often, in fact, done by these very same actors.
That Nordic giant Sterling Hayden, never easy to cast, gives a reprise of a role the angry cop that suited him so well he encored it several times, taking his final bow in 1972 in The Godfather. (And, as nasty cops go, maybe only Robert Ryan played it nastier.) Gloria Grahame's kittenish victim had become by this time a staple of the cycle, but it's almost always good to watch her anyway. But so hot on the heels of Fritz Lang's The Big Heat, her role in The Naked Alibi looks very much like the larcenous knock-off that it is, right down to the final, poignant fadeout (and it doesn't help when she makes her entrance as a nightclub canary using a dubbed voice).
The plot, which loses more credibility every time it takes a new turn, concerns the murder of police officers a smallish California city. Hayden's prime suspect is Gene Barry, but this church-going baker with a submissive wifey fools everybody else. Dogging him relentlessly, Hayden gets thrown off the force and, free-lancing, follows Barry to a wide-open town on the Mexican border where the suspect leads a double life, involving Grahame. Inevitably, Hayden gets involved with her too. Barry finally flashes his true colors and he joins Hayden in pursuing their mutual vendetta. But the working out is perfunctory and predictable, and it goes to show that even marquee stars can't salvage a tired, derivative piece of filmmaking.
6 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?