Hollywood 1950: The successful producer Larry O'Brian arrives in Los Angeles to found a motion picture company. He buys an old studio which was unused since the days of silent movies. He's ... See full summary »
The businessman Ogata Shingo works with his son Shuichi, who is his secretary, and they live together in the suburb with their wives Yasuko and Kikuko respectively. Shuichi has a love ... See full summary »
While waiting at a train station, Nikki Collins witnesses a murder from a nearby building. When she brings the police to the scene of the crime, they think she's crazy since there's no body... See full summary »
Edward Everett Horton
Antonio Gomez, a nearly down-and-out musician, is a widower with a young boy, Paco. Fighting to support his boy in the face of unemployment and neighbors who want custody of his son (... See full summary »
Nick Magellan works for the corrupt businessman Charlie Lupo, who presides over an influential crime syndicate in Manhattan, New York. New York senators belong to the realm of this syndicate. Charlie has a recalcitrant daughter, Kathy Lupo. She is in love with Nick. Nick protects Kathy against her father when she leaves her parental home. Charlie always knows not to be judged, but when one of the senators talks too much during a television interview, he is in the center of a massive fraud research by the law. Written by
a bristling Richard Conte performance, a peculiar film
NEW YORK CONFIDENTIAL is a perplexing film noir entry. Among its many merits is the astonishing cast: Broderick Crawford (who spits out his dialogue in Howard Hawks-rapidity as if he were on amphetamines), Anne Bancroft (astonishing) and the always reliable Richard Conte. But it never shakes the feeling of being two films in one, sitting uneasily side by side: a stern "semi-documentary" expose of the "syndicate" on one hand, and a bleak and brutal pre-Godfather mafia family saga on the other.
As such, it is wildly and tragically uneven. The leads all turn in brilliant performances, but the screenplay has all the earmarks of a committee job; fascinating ideas and characterizations butt up against terribly overwrought clichés. The main cast is on fire with weighty dialogue, but the supporting cast flounders about as if they were in the most pedestrian B-noir instead of a star-driven studio picture. For the most part, the design is static and lifeless, shot with little flair by Eddie Fitzgerald. Director and co-writer Russell Rouse's previous noir entry was the chancy THE THIEF, also an uneven experiment.
But the film has its scenes of incredible power, usually those revolving around Conte, as a cold and calculating hit-man for hire, and Bancroft, as the put-upon mobster's daughter who can't crawl out from behind dad's shadow; Conte dispatching with "hits", his gunshots creepily muffled by a silencer; Crawford's repeated near-meltdowns; murderous planning done completely straight in a corporate boardroom, just big business as usual.
A puzzler of a film, leaving the viewer to wonder what could have been, had it been shot by John Alton and penned by, say, Dalton Trumbo. Still, it's an extremely valuable entry in the film noir canon, strangely almost impossible to see.
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