Cody Jarrett is the sadistic leader of a ruthless gang of thieves. Afflicted by terrible headaches and fiercely devoted to his 'Ma,' Cody is a volatile, violent, and eccentric leader. Cody's top henchman wants to lead the gang and attempts to have an 'accident' happen to Cody, while he is running the gang from in jail. But Cody is saved by an undercover cop, who thereby befriends him and infiltrates the gang. Finally, the stage is set for Cody's ultimate betrayal and downfall, during a big heist at a chemical plant.Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
Location work was done in the San Fernando Valley (CA) areas of Van Nuys and Chatsworth (in a railroad tunnel). The explosive finale was shot at an oil refinery in Torrance, CA. See more »
The character of "The Reader" is called "Herbert" by Cody in a scene in their cell and by his lawyer during a conversation in the visitors room. Yet when Evans is listening to the police radio broadcast giving the names of the convicts who escaped with Jarrett in the prison break, The Reader's name is given as "Michael Curtin". See more »
If you're into Old Hollywood, and haven't gotten around to seeing "White Heat", remedy that right away! Nobody does 'gangster' like Cagney, and the screenplay by Ivan Goff and Ben Roberts is one of their very best---a classic Warner Brothers crime melodrama, with a mother complex thrown in for its protagonist. When pictures like this are done well, they hold up in spite of the change in standards over time. "White Heat" is tough, even though its violence isn't explicitly shown and there isn't a cuss word in the whole thing. (Can you imagine? Today, even TV talk-show hosts drop f-bombs like gum wrappers. That's progress......) The "White Heat" DVD is available, including 2 commentaries by film historians Leonard Maltin and Drew Casper, in the fun "Warner Brothers Night at the Movies" package. It's the way it used to be when people went to a movie in the Golden Era---with coming attractions, 1949 newsreel, vintage Bugs Bunny cartoon, a comedy short, and the feature picture---with Cagney in his most explosive role. A must see for film buffs.
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