An urban wheeler-dealer gets involved in organized crime, corrupt city politics and graft while falling in-love with the fiancée of the newly elected mayor.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Ben Grace
...
June Lyons
...
Dorothy Lyons
...
Frank Jansen
...
Solly Caspar
...
Gauss
...
Lenhardt
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Storyline

Kleptomaniac Dorothy Lyons is paroled from prison in custody of her sister June, secretary to "reform" political candidate Frank Jansen. Ben Grace, associate of crime boss Sol Caspar, sees this as a way to smear Jansen's campaign. But after falling out with Caspar, Ben tries to help June, who he begins to fall for. Sexy Dorothy also has a yen for Ben. June is reluctantly forced to go along with Ben's schemes, but there may be more to these than meets the eye... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Out of the shadows of a vice-ridden city comes James M. Cain's most explosive drama! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

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Details

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Release Date:

8 February 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Straße des Verbrechens  »

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Connections

Referenced in WPC 56: Great Pretenders (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hard Boiled, Mondo-Bizarro and Slightly Awesome
1 May 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

First, let's be straight: this is a deliriously entertaining, venal and vampy exercise in melodrama. It's a ridiculous movie with a nonsensical script, awesome crazy quilt radioactive light bright technicolor and at times laughably non-motivated behavior. But it's also a tongue-in-cheek anti-noir mini masterpiece crammed with over dramatized scene chewing and pleasingly unintentional laughs. The set designs feature some of the biggest house interiors ever (how does Rhonda Fleming afford that mansion on her secretarial salary??) Arlene Dahl is a deliciously cheesy home run as the sex object du jour and gives Martha "The Big Sleep" Vickers a run for her money in the slutty and criminally irredeemable little sister department. Everyone is working some angle here (particularly John Payne), which is both intriguing and finally just dizzying. Fleming, Dahl, Payne and Kent Taylor take a love triangle and turn it into a quadralateral with little trouble. This isn't the calculated and sleek Double Indemnity James M. Cain, but it sure has the smoulder and desperation of The Postman Always Ring Twice JMC.

There's a political campaign thrown in and a big gangster (huffy and puffy Ted De Corsia) subplot for good measure, but this is ultimately a celebration of the campiest aspects of melodrama and what a party they throw! Definitely a date movie and highly entertaining for all the right reasons. If you can see it in the theatre, you may go blind from the glowingly phosphorescent crimson hues. "Slightly" Scarlet my ass!


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