During the Rif War in Morocco, the French Foreign Legion's outpost of Tarfa is threatened by Khalif Hussein's tribes but Sergeant Mike Kincaid devises a plan of survival until the arrival of French reinforcements.
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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Lots of fury and lots of Technicolor in early film noir...
Probably the most distinguished feature of DESERT FURY is the spectacular Technicolor Paramount lavished on it, a story of personal conflicts among Nevada's gambling set. Another distinguished feature is MARY ASTOR as Fritzi, a hard-boiled dame who runs a gambling establishment and keeps a tight leash on her willful daughter (LIZABETH SCOTT). Scott is strikingly photographed and reminded me of a more animated version of Veronica Lake.
But complications arise when two men pay too much attention to Astor's daughter--JOHN HODIAK (a no good hunk who may or may not have murdered his wife) and BURT LANCASTER as a wary police officer who keeps Lizabeth Scott on his radar at all times.
It's fun as melodrama, nothing more or less, and at times achieves something of a camp classic with Astor's butch performance as she effortlessly steals the film's acting honors. Take it or leave it, it's all in good, steamy fun with lots of fury going on under those hot Technicolor lights.
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