During WWII, the publisher of the isolationist New York Gazette is murdered just as he was about to change the paper's policy and support the US war effort. His friend, a small town patriotic editor, is brought in to find the culprits.
Agadez is a lonely French outpost baking under the desert sun and commanded by the cruel and oppressive Captain Savatt (C. Henry Gordon). To it comes, at his own request, Legionnaire Jim ... See full summary »
The Globe is a small, but visionary newspaper started by Phineas Mitchell, an editor recently fired by The Star. The two newspapers become enemies, and the Star's ruthless heiress Charity Hackett decides to eliminate the competition.
After having served 5 years in prison, for killing a man while defending her disreputable lover, Harry (John Baragrey), Jenny Marsh (Patricia Knight) is set for parole. Her parole officer, Griff Marat Cornel Wilde is determined to make Jenny go straight. For lack of other prospects Griff finds Jenny a job in his own home, something totally against regulations. At first, Jenny still has feelings for Harry, but as Griff shows her more compassion and care, she falls in love with him - which Harry seems to encourage, because he has plans to crush Griff and his dreams of political office, and the situation soon becomes even more dangerous...Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
In Samuel Fuller's original script, the film ended with a violent rebellion by Marat against the system that kept him and Marsh apart. The studio had National Velvet (1944) scriptwriter Helen Deutsch step in to pen a soft-suds rewrite. See more »
They say it's the journey, not the destination, that usually counts with stories. In the case of Shockproof it's good to just focus on the journey, in all its B-movie-ness and, yes since it is Douglas Sirk, melodrama, because the destination kind of stinks. The film's story concerns a beautiful blonde parolee played by Patricia Knight who is put into the watchful eye and soon enough loving arms of her parole officer, Cornell Wilde. She's been wanting to get back together with her former lover, a gambler-hustler named Harry Wesson, who by the look of the guy is sleazy but perhaps not too bad a shake for a 'dame' like Knight plays. But the parole officer wants a better life for her, and that she knows it too. Soon she does, after some persistence, fall for Griff, but at a price when another character gets (preumably) murdered after a gunshot.
It becomes a lovers-on-the-run story, and, not to quote Harry's own line about the melodrama I mention above, this twist does bring some melodrama with it as the characters try to evade the law, cross into Mexico, go back into the states and Griff becomes an oil-drill worker. But the main problem of being on the lam catches up to them, and finally a decision is made. It's around here, in just the last few minutes, that the film really crumbles into predictability (and, to be fair, it wasn't Fuller's idea as the producer rewrote the script before filming). The acting and the script up until that point, however, does deliver on the promise of a simple premise. There's nothing terribly special about the story, but it works on its own terms as a tale of a love-triangle gone awry. We know the situation might be different if a character did something smarter, or did something more drastic or if, say, Harry went more into an actual criminal role and just ran off with Jenny to start with after she got out of prison.
But as it stands the performances are just fine- even the one-note crooning of the blind mother of Griff's who knows what she knows even without seeing, a real Fuller caricature if I ever saw one- and when it comes off like a real film-noir, with edge and believability, both of the legends Sirk and Fuller can get credit. It's no great shakes, but it passes 80 minutes by with some rich emotions and a, with a few exceptions in some scenes, solid dramatic turns and directions made by the characters.
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