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Desert Fury (1947)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 15 August 1947 (USA)
The daughter of a Nevada casino owner gets involved with a racketeer, despite everyone's efforts to separate them.


Lewis Allen


Robert Rossen (screenplay), Ramona Stewart (novel)




Complete credited cast:
John Hodiak ... Eddie Bendix
Lizabeth Scott ... Paula Haller
Burt Lancaster ... Tom Hanson
Wendell Corey ... Johnny Ryan
Mary Astor ... Fritzi Haller
Kristine Miller ... Claire Lindquist
William Harrigan ... Judge Berle Lindquist
James Flavin ... Sheriff Pat Johnson
Jane Novak ... Mrs. Lindquist
Anna Camargo Anna Camargo ... Rosa


Fritzi Haller is a powerful casino owner in Chuckawalla, Nevada. Her daughter Paula (having quit school) returns at the same time as racketeer Eddie Bendix, who left under suspicion of murdering his wife. Paula and Eddie become involved; each for their own reasons, Fritzi, Paula's old beau Tom, and Eddie's pal Johnny try to break up the relationship. Then Eddie's past catches up with him in an unexpected way. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Two men wanted her love ... The third wanted her life !


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Did You Know?


Lizabeth Scott walks down the main street of the town carrying a book, of which we can see the beginning of the title: "This Is." The book is "This Is My Best," an anthology by 93 writers of a short humorous work which they consider their best. See more »


Eddie pours a cup of hot coffee down the back of the neck of a cafe customer, yet the customer does not cry out or make any sound. See more »


Paula Haller: What did you tell her, Judge? That there's really no difference between us, that you're one of Fritzi's partners? That you make your money the same way Fritzi does except you get paid off in back alleys so that you can stay respectable?
Fritzi Haller: Oh don't talk like that! The Judge...
Paula Haller: Judge! Even the title's phony.
Fritzi Haller: He's trying to be nice, he said he'd talk to her.
Paula Haller: He's been talking to her ever since I was eight years ago.
Fritzi Haller: Well you're not eight years old anymore.
Paula Haller: No. I used to cry when I was eight.
Fritzi Haller: But you don't ...
See more »


Featured in The Silver Screen: Color Me Lavender (1997) See more »

User Reviews

A small classic
10 December 2018 | by MOscarbradleySee all my reviews

A cracker of a film noir in colour. John Hodiak is the gambler with a dead wife, Lizabeth Scott is the broad who looks like her, Burt Lancaster is the sheriff in love with Scott and Mary Astor is simply terrific as Scott's hard-as-nails mother; oh, and then there's Hodiak's henchman played by a then unknown Wendell Corey who is obviously gay and in love with Hodiak and who will do whatever it takes to keep him for himself. Yes, "Desert Fury" has an edge to it that other noirs of the period didn't. Robert Rossen wrote the screenplay and it may be safe to say that it was probably the best thing Lewis Allen ever did. A small classic.

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Release Date:

15 August 1947 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Desert Town See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hal Wallis Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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