To critics at the time, it was a fairly standard low-budget crime drama, though a very good one with a dash of stylistic pizzazz. The fractured narrative and multiple perspectives made audiences’ heads hurt, however, and the picture bombed in theaters. Today, apart from being thought of as “that early Kubrick movie,” it’s generally considered, yes, a fairly standard late noir heist picture, if a very good one with a dash of stylistic pizzazz. But it’s much more, and more subversive than that.
February 19, 2015