There is money missing from a bank job, an attractive model, an insurance investigator, and two extremely dangerous thugs. James Vanning (Aldo Ray) portrays an innocent man on the run, being pursued by the criminals who stupidly misplaced their take from the crime and think he has it or knows where it is hidden. Add model Marie Gardner (Anne Bancroft) who crossed paths with nice guy Vanning, while he is on the run. This all adds up to a thriller wherein the viewer is drawn into the story and becomes part of the drama. When Marie says "things that really happen are difficult to explain" it captures the theme of this film. A nice girl helps a nice guy, who is innocent and is drawn into the drama. As tension mounts she says: "I am always meeting the wrong man, and it leads to doomed relationships." Marie inadvertently leads Vanning into the hands of the villains. However, she is a pseudo-femme fatale, innocently involved in the intrigue and, like the viewer, is gradually drawn into the ...
THE BLACK BAG...with $350,000 in loot! THE BLACK DRESS...with a beautiful pick-up girl inside! THE BLACK NIGHT...made for lovers...and killers!
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Did You Know?
Listed by author James Ellroy as one of his favorite Los Angles set noir films along with Tge Prowler, Crimewave, and Murder by Contract. See more
At the camp, when James Vanning (Aldo Ray) sees the speeding car, he says, "It's going to go over!" Even though the car is basically going down a straight road in a fairly straight line (no evidence of driving crazy enough to go off the road). Immediately afterward, the car brakes and swerves hard to the right and drives off the road. Something no one could have seen or anticipated until it happened. See more
Anyway, I'm scared. You don't know what it is to live with your back against the wall, Marie. Inside you change. You really change.
Referenced in Murder of a Cat
Nocturne Op. 9 No. 2
Music by Frédéric Chopin
Played on piano at the restaurant See more