In Nazi Germany in 1936 seven men escape from a concentration camp. The camp commander puts up seven crosses and, as the Gestapo returns each escapee he is put to death on a cross. The ... See full summary »
Ralph and Annabell Willart are a feuding couple who are constantly bickering over their worthless, good-for nothing son Berry-Berry. When Berry-Berry begins yet another meaningless love ... See full summary »
Eva Marie Saint,
Five office friends meet up for a night on the town to celebrate the forthcoming marriage of one of them. As the night wears on and the drink starts to tell, they become more confidential ... See full summary »
Adapted from a Broadway play by Michael V. Gazzo. The original stage production opened on Nov. 9, 1955 at the Lyceum Theatre in New York and ran for 389 performances. Ben Gazzara and Shelley Winters played the two leads in the original stage play. See more »
Moving, hard-hitting, tender when it needs to be, and well-acted...
An ex-soldier/now unemployed junkie in New York City keeps his addiction secret from his pregnant wife and his visiting father; his adoring brother acts as an enabler, and eventually things come to a boil when the guy needs a hit and can't scrape together the twenty dollars to get himself through the night. Playwright Michael V. Gazzo made a big splash with this story on the stage; he's also credited with work on the adaptation, yet the only fault of the film is the dialogue. The back-and-forth conversations between the addict and his wife or the addict and his father don't really ring true (the words are theatrical, as is the phrasing given by the actors). The brother, portrayed by Oscar-nominee Anthony Franciosa (reprising his Broadway performance), spends far too much of the first act drunk--in that movie-version of inebriated (stumbling, laughing, fiddling with his clothes, saying, "I'm drunk! I'm drunk!"). Still, Franciosa gets a good rhythm going with Lloyd Nolan as his father and Don Murray as his brother, although Nolan and Murray don't fare as well when they're on their own. Murray tries hard in the showiest part, and several of his big scenes are effective, but he's too clean, too dry and smooth to really convey the lows of a doper on the edge. Eva Marie Saint has the most under-developed role playing Murray's wife, yet she conveys the polite frustration of this woman with ease (which is often times harder than pulling out all the stops). Nice locations and gritty black-and-white cinematography help tremendously, and the picture is quite moving once the preliminaries are out of the way. **1/2 from ****
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