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A number of otherwise insignificant small-town stories erupt into drama when a gang of hoodlums decides to rob the local bank. A father looking for pride in his son's eyes, a timid clerk who is a peeping tom by night, a man striving to rewin his wife's love, an Amish farmer faced with viciousness, and a proper older woman turned thief, all find themselves entangled with the bank robbers as a peaceful weekend turns violent. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
The wide-screen format was at most only two years old when this film was made. Yet, Charles G. Clarke's shot composition in the new wide-screen format is beautiful. This alone makes the film worth watching.
This is a good example of a color film noir; perhaps not as good as Niagara (1953) or Leave her to Heaven (1945), which were made by the same studio by the way (20th Century Fox), but still a good example from the noir cycle in color.
One way to understand film noir is that it is simply violent melodrama. Look at The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946) for example. Violent Saturday (1955) is steeped in melodrama, but there is also some extraordinary violence. And the violence here--in typical noir fashion--is the resolution--however bleak--to some of the melodramatic conflict.
The film has a profound cynicism grinding beneath the surface of the beautiful color photography. And this cynicism remains at the end of the film.
If you haven't seen this film and you are interested in film noir or film of this period, then I would highly recommend the Violent Saturday.
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