Ida Lupino is at the center of her fourth film with Walsh, a noir musical, where her character, Petey Brown, solves everyone’s problems but her own. Bruce Bennett plays the man she loves, a troubled jazz pianist capable of greatness but determined to fail. She’s the only one holding chaos and hunger at bay. Robert Alda plays the club owner who wants to control her, even as he’s screwing her foolish sister in law.
I love this little-seen rarely discussed Walsh film. Ida Lupino's performance is superb. However I don't think this is a still from the film. To the best of my knowledge George Raft isn't in the movie. (Robert Alda is a brilliantly conceived weak Raft-wannabe gangster who Lupino slaps around at a decisive moment in the film.) This movie is a strange in-advance-of-cultural-history feminist classics.
It's a pity that this masterpiece is still so little known. An influence on films such as NEW YORK, NEW YORK and ROADHOUSE, this is a portrait of a jazz musician Petey Brown(Ida Lupino, great as always) returning home to her sisters. This is a film about post-war blues very precisely captured and rendered with great simplicity and poetry.
A gem of a film -- Walsh's direction is great, Lupino is fierce and the plot is, for the most part, very intriguing. I have one qualm though -- I think the film could have worked better if the other characters had been more fleshed out. I for one would have liked to have found out more about Sally's husband and his PTSD. All in all though, this underseen film is well worth checking out.