Monday, August 3, 2015

Red Light (1949)

(SLWB -  October 18, 2011)

 Directed by Roy Del Ruth with George Raft, Virginia Mayo, Henry Morgan, Arthur Franz, and Raymond Burr. IMDB synopsis: Nick Cherney (Burr), in prison for embezzling from Torno Freight Co., sees a chance to get back at Johnny Torno (raft)  through his young priest brother Jess (Franz). He pays fellow prisoner Rocky (Morgan), who gets out a week before Nick, to murder Jess...who, dying, tells revenge-minded Johnny that he'd written a clue "in the Bible." Frustrated, Johnny obsessively searches for the missing Gideon Bible from Jess's hotel room whose first occupant after Jess was Carla (Mayo), who he hires to help track down the rest of the transients. Meanwhile, Nick himself gets out with murder still in his heart. But another factor is in play that none of them (except the murdered Jess) had planned on.

Another Noir I've never seen and never heard of before but this one is listed in the An Encyclopedic Reference to American Style Film Noir (ERASFM).  With this one the ending is sort of telegraphed way ahead of time if you can read the obvious "code" but it has enough twists and turns to keep you guessing to the end . Never the less once we cross the tracks into Noirville it stays there and doesn't disappoint in the visual department, there are some great sequences that impress. The red light in the film's title refers partly to the large Torno Trucking sign that figures in the final denouement . Forget what you see and read on the poster above Mayo provides no cheesecake of any sort and she really doesn't take anything either a bit of false advertising. 

Caught this on TCM today Another 7/10.

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