Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Big Heat, 1953

Movie for the Evening: “The Big Heat”


A city’s organize crime is the center piece of this enduring noir drama. After more than half a century of similar headlines, “The Big Heat” theme is well know territory, yet the cast and direction of this classic keeps it fresh and still carries an impact.

Glen Ford is Sargent Dave Bannion a devoted family man and an honest cop. His life takes a turn for the worst when a superior commits suicide and while investigating the circumstances he uncovers proof that top officials are aiding the city’s criminals. Bannion is on his own as he digs deep to find the truth.

Friz Lang, the director, uses implied violence to explore despicable behavior. Vince Stone, played by Lee Marvin, is the young tuff that abuses his girlfriend Gloria, played by Debbie Marsh, and is the focus on the male on female violence.

The cushy arrangement the criminals have unravels when, by a set of circumstances, the letter written by the official that committed suicide exposes them all.

There’s an appearance by Joycelyn Brando, Marlin’s sister, as Ford’s wife who is tragically, and unintentionally, killed, however this is Glen’s movie as he maneuvers through scene after scene to fix the city by ridding it of this bad element.

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