Police Detective Mike Carter often prefers to bend the rules in his work, he using his physical brawn to speak for him, resulting in no love lost between him and his immediate superior, Lieutenant Borden. Rather than be suspended for insubordination in bending the rules one too many times, Mike decides to quit. His unemployment has the potential to be short lived when he is approached by Freddie Dysen, the nephew of Gene Dysen, the owner of the Continental Meat Packing Company. Gene has been receiving threats and Freddie wants to hire Mike to act as Gene's bodyguard. Not liking Freddie's pushiness in assuming he can be bought, Mike declines despite the lucrative paycheck. Although it changes the complexity, Mike still declines when he sees that Gene is not a man but a woman, who believes the threats meaningless, as does her personal secretary, Connie Fenton. And despite Gene and Connie not wanting a bodyguard hanging around due to the notoriety, Mike does change his mind and accepts ...Written by
When Carter leaves the Dysens' house for the meat packing plant, he doesn't wear a hat and drives over in a borrowed car (i.e., his hat wouldn't be in it). He's then seen at the plant with a hat on. See more »
Up until a few weeks ago, I only knew cult 40s tough guy Lawrence Tierney from his role in Tarantino's RESERVOIR DOGS (1991); recently, however, I managed to watch his 2 vehicles released on DVD by Warners as part of their "Film Noir Collection Vol. 2", namely DILLINGER (1945) and BORN TO KILL (1947). This Richard Fleischer film, then, would be my third from Tierney's short period of glory.
Actually, the actor is the best thing about the whole movie - whose story, amazingly, was co-written by a very young Robert Altman! - as it's certainly a minor noir, albeit an enjoyable one; indeed, Tierney's cynical, no-nonsense attitude (reminiscent of Bogart, Mitchum and Robert Ryan) provides a good deal of amusement throughout. Still, the plot - a discredited cop uncovering corruption in a meat-packing company, when appointed to protect the elderly female proprietor - is nothing special and also kind of dreary; besides, the jovial personality of leading lady Priscilla Lane is as much unsuited to Tierney's hard-boiled façade as she is to the inherent bleakness of the genre!
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