Harry Fabian is a London hustler with ambitious plans that never work out. One day, when he encounters the most famous Greco-Roman wrestler in the world, Gregorius, at a London wrestling arena run by his son Kristo, he dreams up a scheme that he thinks will finally be his ticket to financial independence. As Fabian attempts to con everyone around him to get his scheme to work, he of course only ends up conning himself. This is an interesting tale of blind ambition, self-deception, broken dreams, and how a man who always thinks he's ahead of the game ends up tripping himself very badly.Written by
Alan Katz <firstname.lastname@example.org>
It took a second look for me to enjoy this movie as it didn't really appeal much to me on the first viewing. Perhaps a better picture helped. If I had the Criterion DVD, it would be much better I'm sure but, for now, I'll have to settle for the VHS. This is a very noir-ish with a lot of dark scenes, so a good transfer is a must.
Most of the action takes place at night in London alleyways, nightclubs and gymnasiums. The storyline is a downer, that's for sure. It is a rough and sometimes depressing story. Richard Widmark, as "Harry Fabian," has the starring role and plays a real loser, a desperate man who always has a scheme concocted but usually messes up. Some critics think this is Widmark's best performance ever. Francis Sullivan is interesting as the nightclub owner. Gene Tierney gets second billing but doesn't have much of role in here.
Some memorable scenes include a wrestling match with big Mike Mazurki and "Gregorious." I'm not much into wrestling but this was an amazing match, extremely intense.
This film is a bit different from most American-based film noirs. It's not a pleasant story, it's moody, and it has a certain fascination to it.
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