Dublin, 1920. Gypo Nolan, strong but none too bright, has been ousted from the rebel organization and is starving. When he finds that his equally destitute sweetheart Katie has been reduced to prostitution, he succumbs to temptation and betrays his former comrade Frankie to the British authorities for a 20 pound reward. In the course of one gloomy, foggy night, guilt and retribution inexorably close in...Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
This was the first of RKO's three-picture deal with director John Ford and, despite its deserved reputation and multiple Oscars, it was a low-budget production--it came in at a mere $243,000. See more »
After Gypo is shot several times in the chest and lower torso, he stumbles into the church and falls face down. When he rises, there's no blood on the floor of the church. See more »
Opening credits prologue: 1920 "Then Judas repented himself-and cast down the thirty pieces of silver - and departed." See more »
The earliest video versions in Argentina were lifted from an old 16mm print in English, with Spanish language subtitles. That version also features the opening credits in Spanish and the title in Spanish is "El delator". See more »
A lot of movies of John Ford (Sean O'Feeney) deal with Ireland.At every stage of a long and brilliant career,he gets back to his roots in his homeland:"the informer" and "the plough and the stars" are early period;"the quiet man " is middle, "young Cassidy" is late.
Far from being "one of the worst movies of the thirties" ,"the informer " belongs to its time:that's true that the studios deny realism but that was true for Fritz Lang's "M" and Marcel Carné's "réalisme poétique" too.Anyway,at a pinch,no matter if it's a political subject in the Ireland of the twenties:what Ford has to say to us is universal:when a man betrays his best friend,be it for thirty coins of silver or for twenty quids,he will be eaten with remorse ,everything that he'll see and hear will remember him of the awful thing he's done.Gypo won't take advantage of his pitiful reward,he will loose everything except the victim's mother's compassion and forgiveness. All through this dark movie,Gypo will roam the foggy streets ,a desperate man:you should not forget that he is an outcast from the beginning:dismissed by the IRA,because he hadn't guts enough to kill a prisoner,and outside a girl,and Jackie (the man he will betray),he's on his own ,a man who suffers from hunger and,worse, lack of self-esteem -the one time when he finds solace is when he has a rest near his girl's fireplace-This character is not that much far from Peter Lorre's part in "M":both movies feature a secret trial.
As always in Ford's cinema,women are figures of peace love and understanding,and for them a man can always redeem his soul: here Katie and the mother.In "quiet man" ,Wayne is given a second chance thanks to Ireland and... Maureen O'Hara.And after all Ford's last movie will be "seven women" (1966) :a doctor(Ann Bancroft) will triumph over barbary against all odds.
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