When the truck that is transporting convicts has an accident on the road, the inmates John "Joker" Jackson and Noah Cullen that are chained to each other escape. They hate each other but they need to help each other to succeed in their intent of going north to jump in a train and reach freedom. Meanwhile the humane Sheriff Max Muller organizes a posse to track them down in a civilized manner and respecting justice. Joker and Cullen reach a small farm where a lonely woman helps them to get rid of their chains. She offers to drive her car with Joker and her son Billy while Cullen would escape through the swamp to the railroad. But when Joker learns that she sent Cullen to a trap, he leaves her and is shot in the shoulder by Billy. Joker seeks out Cullen to save him and when they meet each other, their former hatred has changed to friendship and respect.Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Tony Curtis was very keen to make the film as he saw it as an opportunity to break out of the mindless, pretty boy roles he was usually assigned. Director Stanley Kramer initially had some misgivings, but ultimately relented. See more »
Near the end of the film after Jackson falls in the mud trying to catch up to Cullen there is thick mud all the way up his front over his shoulders. In the next shot his right shoulder is suddenly unmuddied. See more »
[after covering Joker's face with mud so it doesn't show in the moonlight]
There, now just the meanness shines through.
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I have seen this film several times and each time I am feeling that this is one of the best drama I've ever seen. There are new remakes of this film, but the original is the best. Acting of Sidney Poitier is without any doubt superb, while Tony Curtis did also his best. The director, Stanley Kramer, chose a very good and interesting plot, how two different persons can have better relationship and interests when they fight together for their lives. No matter if one is black and the other white, or no matter if one is atheist and the other Christian, at the end they will understand each other because their cause is only one and is the same, to become free.
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