7.6/10
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146 user 67 critic

Dark Passage (1947)

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A man convicted of murdering his wife escapes from prison and works with a woman to try and prove his innocence.

Director:

Delmer Daves

Writers:

Delmer Daves (screen play by), David Goodis (from the novel by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Humphrey Bogart ... Vincent Parry
Lauren Bacall ... Irene Jansen
Bruce Bennett ... Bob
Agnes Moorehead ... Madge Rapf
Tom D'Andrea ... Cabby - Sam
Clifton Young ... Baker
Douglas Kennedy ... Detective
Rory Mallinson ... George Fellsinger
Houseley Stevenson ... Dr. Walter Coley
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Alvin ... Blackie (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

Bogart plays a man convicted of murdering his wife who escapes from prison in order to prove his innocence. Bogart finds that his features are too well known, and is forced to seek some illicit backroom plastic surgery. The entire pre-knife part of the film is shot from a Bogart's-eye-view, with us seeing the fugitive for the first time as he starts to recuperate from the operation in the apartment of a sympathetic young artist (played by Bacall) for whom he soon finds affection. But what he's really after is revenge. Written by Mark Thompson <mrt@oasis.icl.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

TOGETHER...AND TORRID AGAIN! (original print media ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 September 1947 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das unbekannte Gesicht See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The first film in which Humphrey Bogart wore a full hairpiece. See more »

Goofs

In the diner, a sign on the wall for the ham special says it includes "potatoes - salad - drink - and 'desert.'" (not 'dessert'). See more »

Quotes

Vincent Parry: I hope I'm not a coward when you start in.
Dr. Walter Coley: We're all cowards. There's no such thing as courage. There's only fear, the fear of getting hurt. And the fear of dying. That's why human beings live so long.
Dr. Walter Coley: [getting a towel ready to put over Vincent's face] You won't feel any pain with this. I'm gonna' give you some shots that'll freeze your face.
Dr. Walter Coley: [placing towel over Vincent's face] Now... just close your eyes. Got a fine anesthetic. Used it in the last war. It's in your bloodstream now...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cinemania (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Avalon
(uncredited)
Music by Vincent Rose
(based on "E lucevan le stelle" in the opera "Tosca" by Giacomo Puccini)
Played on the car radio at the beginning
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Fascinating film noir
15 November 2000 | by jnyby83See all my reviews

Wow, we are really asked to believe a lot in this film. Typically movies can only get away with one or two unlikely plot elements, but somehow I still enjoyed 'Dark Passage' despite numerous key elements' implausibility.

The film opens to a shot of convicted felon Parry (Bogart) in a barrel in back of a truck headed down the road. He shakes the barrel, takes a nasty roll and staggers out. It's just the first of many doubt-inducing sequences.

The film, with its plot problems aside, is really an excellent film noir study. We are taken through most of the first half of the film from the first-person Parry (Bogart) view. I found this fascinating, despite wooden dialogue and continuous unrealistic steadiness of the camera. I think the base story of 'Dark Passage' is superb, with all its film noir elements. I especially like the first-person view, which then transforms through a surrealistic imagery scene of plastic surgery, into the normal third-person view.

One plot element I particularly take issue with is that, although Parry gets a new face, we are asked to believe that his distinctive Bogart voice cannot be recognised by the closest of his acquaintances. He makes no effort whatsoever to account for this, and this is given no thought in the slightest.

The film is one I would personally love to make - I would like to direct the thing myself, and revise the script a bit, make it more real in dialogue and plot primarily. This is a feeling I've not oft encountered, because I've almost always felt a director has done, even when he presents a wrong point of view, a better job than I could do. Due to my love for the story here I was torn - torn I tell you - in my selection of a vote for this film, but arrived at 7. I took off for the unrealistic factors, but made sure to preserve the respectability of the film. It is, incontestably, a classic - and in my opinion, just because a film is old doesn't mean it is. I respect this film.


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