After years of pursuit, Assistant D.A. Martin Ferguson has a good case against Murder, Inc. boss Albert Mendoza. Mendoza is in jail and his lieutenant Joseph Rico is going to testify. But Rico falls to his death and Ferguson must work through the night going over everything to build the case anew.
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Strong cast (especially the criminals) let down by flat direction and a screenplay which portrays the police as amateurishly incompetent (unable to secure buildings, protect endangered witnesses, run at more than a snail's pace or know what "hit" and "contract" mean). Anthony Mann would have done a better job, brought the noir and got the best out of Bogie. Still pretty enjoyable though and the ending is suspenseful.
Excellent film "noir" américain, qui malgré une sortie discrète durant l'année 1951, devint rapidement un film-culte de cette époque bénie pour ses efficaces productions du genre mais que nous ne mettrons pas au pinacle comme bien des thuriféraires...
I know I'm supposed to like this stuff, but I don't know how anyone can actually say we don't make gangster movies better now than we did then. They're boring, and they're written by people who knew nothing of the world they were imitating. Guilting a mass murderer by showing him photos? Are you kidding me?