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Night Editor (1946)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 29 March 1946 (USA)
"Night Editor" was based on the already existing radio program in which a newspaper editor would recount the 'inside story' of some bit newspaper story, and later became a television series... See full summary »

Director:

Henry Levin

Writers:

Scott Littleton (story "Inside Story"), Harold Jacob Smith (screenplay) (as Hal Smith) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview:
William Gargan ... Police Lt. Tony Cochrane
Janis Carter ... Jill Merrill
Jeff Donnell ... Martha Cochrane
Coulter Irwin Coulter Irwin ... Johnny
Charles D. Brown Charles D. Brown ... Crane Stewart
Paul E. Burns ... Police Lt. Ole Strom
Harry Shannon ... Police Capt. Lawrence
Frank Wilcox ... Douglas Loring
Robert Kellard ... Doc Cochrane (as Robert Stevens)
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Storyline

"Night Editor" was based on the already existing radio program in which a newspaper editor would recount the 'inside story' of some bit newspaper story, and later became a television series: This time, a night editor of a newspaper is telling a story to a young reporter, who is neglecting his job and wife and beginning to drink too much. The story begins as a police detective, although devoted to his wife and young son, has entered into an affair with a society girl, also married, and while they are parked out in the boonies on a lonely road, they witness a murder. The detective, because of the circumstances of being where he is for the reason he is there, does not attempt to catch the killer and does not report the crime. He is later assigned the case and soon realizes that an innocent man is about to take the blame, and the only way he can clear him is to arrest the killer and become a witness against him. The story-teller also has a vested interest in the old case. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In the middle of a kiss...Murder!

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 March 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Il veleno del peccato See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Although the majority of the movie is a prolonged flashback set in the early 1930s, absolutely everything (with the exception of a few vintage cars) - hairstyles, wardrobe, music and decor, is strictly contemporary 1946, without the slightest attempt at accuracy. See more »

Quotes

Jill Merrill: I don't need you, I can buy and sell you.I don't know why I bother seeing you.
Tony Cochrane: You don't know why? I'll tell you. You're rotten rich through and through.Like something they serve at the Ritz,only its been laying out in the sun too long.
Jill Merrill: That's right, Tony, you're not my kind. The clean cut type.Little tootsie-wootsie loves her great big stupid peasant.
Tony Cochrane: Yeah, for all your dough, like a ton of bricks!
Jill Merrill: How picturesque. And you were totally unresponsive?
Tony Cochrane: You're like a sickness. I was sick!
Jill Merrill: No, Tony...
[...]
See more »

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User Reviews

Pushing the '40's Envelope
11 February 2015 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

Catch that big crashing wave as spider woman Jill (Carter) reaches her own kind of climax. There's nothing like viewing a mangled dead body to get some spider women off, and Jill's some kind of cold-hearted 40's temptress. Too bad cop Cochrane (Gargan) doesn't run for the hills or maybe even his loving wife after viewing this little perverse episode. Instead, he covers up the murder he and Jill just eye-balled. After all, neither wives nor city fathers reward philandering husbands. So how is Cochrane going to clear his conscience once an innocent man is about to get fried for a murder the two illicit lovers know he didn't commit.

My guess is Night Editor was hoping to repeat the success of the noirish Whistler series, also adapted from radio. It didn't happen, but not because of a failure in this 60-minutes. Sure, it wraps up in conventional fashion, even if imaginatively done. After all, there was a stultifying Production Code in effect. Still, the other 55-minutes amounts to a nail-biting trip down black shadow lane. Actor Gargan may not show much emotion as the conflicted cop. But then he's got to keep his real feelings inside. Otherwise he might give it all away, which includes not just his job but wife and family, as well. So, how did he get mixed up with the blonde man-eater in the first place. Apparently it was from working on a prior case that involved Jill and her ritzy clueless husband. It appears she sets a mean trap for about every guy crossing her predatory path, including bank presidents.

No doubt about it, Jill's on the very edge of 40's perversity. Carter really looks the part of blonde ice-queen, even if nuance is not her strong point. I was hoping for some big-eye close-ups that made her similar role in Framed (1947) so memorable, but director Levin's camera stays mainly at a neutral distance. On the whole, it's the script and dark material that carry events.

Anyway, this early noir is a neglected must-see. I'm not going to say gem, since it doesn't quite rise to that level. Still, for sheer 1940's daring, Harold Smith's crafty little screenplay remains an eye-opener.


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