A private eye escapes his past to run a gas station in a small town, but his past catches up with him. Now he must return to the big city world of danger, corruption, double crosses and duplicitous dames.
Because aging boxer Bill Thompson always lost his past fights, his corrupt manager, without telling Thompson, takes bribes from a betting gangster, to ensure Thompson's pre-arranged dive-loss in the next match.
Johnny McQueen, leader of a clandestine Irish organization, has been hiding in the house of Kathleen and her mother, planning a hold-up that will provide his group with the funds needed to continue its activities. During the hold-up, things go sour: Johnny is wounded, cannot make it back to the hideout, and disappears in the back-alleys of Belfast. Immediately, a large-scale man-hunt is launched, and the city is tightly covered by the constabulary, whose chief is intent on capturing Johnny and the other members of the gang. Kathleen sets out in search of Johnny.Written by
Eduardo Casais <email@example.com>
Wilfrid Brambell makes only his second appearance on screen as an uncredited passenger on the bus where the fight takes place. See more »
When Johnny falls from the car into the road, the first long shot shows him in sunlight near the middle of the road and opposite a gutter. A later shot shows him still in sunlight near the middle of the road, but he has now been moved back so he is opposite the intersecting road, so that when he rises he can run straight down that road. See more »
Early British noir is a visual masterpiece...James Mason at his best...
ODD MAN OUT is the kind of film that stays within your film memory long after you've seen it--as in my case, writing this from a memory seared by the experience of watching JAMES MASON in one of his greatest roles as Johnny McQueen, on the lam from the law after a botched robbery ends in the death of a man and he becomes a hunted animal.
Visually, the film is the dark and shadowy kind of film noir that has him stumbling into the cold and snowy landscape, wounded and intent on protecting himself from the elements and the mob of people who want to see him dead. Mason's predicament is much like Victor McLaglen's in THE INFORMER, where he finds himself an outsider with little chance of survival in a world where danger lurks everywhere for anyone caught in a web of intrigue and espionage.
While the IRA is never mentioned, we understand that this is the criminal organization Johnny led and his fate is more or less sealed once he is on the lam.
Brilliant direction by Carol Reed, an anguished performance by the wounded fugitive, JAMES MASON, and wonderful support from Kathleen Ryan and Robert Newton, makes this a superior character study of the good and evil in mankind.
Well worth seeing and probably one of Mason's most memorable roles.
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