Frankie Madison returns to New York after 14 years in prison. Noll Turner, Frankie's former partner in bootlegging, is now a wealthy nightclub manager, and Frankie is expecting him to honor a verbal '50:50' agreement they made when he was caught and Noll got away. Fat chance! Can Frankie, who knows only the strong-arm methods of Prohibition, win out against Big Business? It'll be tough...even with the unlikely alliance of torch singer Kay (Noll's ex-girlfriend).Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The film was based on a play "The Beggars Are Coming to Town" by Theodore Reeves which opened on Broadway on October 27, 1945 starring Paul Kelly and Luther Adler in the Lancaster/Douglas roles as former bootleggers. This was Byron Haskin's first directorial assignment since 1928, having worked as a cameraman in the interim. Haskin felt that the reason none of the cast objected was as newcomers they didn't know enough to object. See more »
(at around 57 min) Dave has explained how the club is organized financially. Frankie turns, walks away in confusion, then turns back to Dave facing downstage right. Then there is a jump cut and Frankie is suddenly turned 90 degrees facing downstage left. See more »
Three of the stars from DESERT FURY (1947) – Burt Lancaster, Lizabeth Scott and Wendell Corey – were reunited in another, marginally superior noir that is most notable today for marking the first of seven screen pairings between Lancaster and Kirk Douglas. Although it was still very early in their careers, they had already become typecast as, respectively, the jilted, ex-con hero and the suave, slimy villain and this film has them reprising those characterizations – albeit less effectively than their prototype seen earlier in THE KILLERS (1946) and OUT OF THE PAST (1947); the same goes for Scott and Corey who both share a divided loyalty towards the two male leads. I WALK ALONE can also be said to have kick-started the directorial career of former technician Byron Haskin which lasted for twenty versatile years; unfortunately, that fact is borne out by the surprising lack of pace (which makes the film seem longer than its 98-minute running-time) and a rather weak climactic confrontation. Even so, the film is most interesting in the way it depicts the change in crime syndication (from streetwise toughness in the bootlegging Depression days to business acumen in the capitalist post-WWII era) that occurred during the fourteen years Lancaster spent behind bars: this is highlighted in a sharply amusing sequence when accountant Corey wrecks Lancaster's dream of owning half of Douglas' business empire (as they had verbally agreed on all those years before) by disclosing in "double-talk" the complex legal relationship that exists between the various companies owned by Douglas!
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