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Force of Evil (1948)

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Abraham Polonsky’s Force of Evil is one of the greatest, and bleakest of all noirs. Made in 1948, just before Polonsky became yet another victim of the HUAC Blacklist, Force of Evil boasts a stellar cast, including veteran heavy Thomas Gomez, the always dependable Roy Roberts, noir specialist Marie Windsor, and is toplined by John Garfield in one of his most memorable roles, as a mouthpiece for the numbers racket who tries to make a quick killing, while keeping his brother, who runs a small time policy office, out of the way of the big boys. Based on the novel Tucker’s People by Ira Wolfert, and immaculately photographed by George Barnes, this is one of the most intelligent, thoughtful, and ultimately horrific tales of greed, deception and betrayal ever brought to the screen. And it’s only 78 minutes long.

You can see the entire film by clicking here, on or the image above.

About the Author

Wheeler Winston Dixon

Wheeler Winston Dixon, Ryan Professor of Film Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, is an internationally recognized scholar and writer of film history, theory and criticism. He is the author of thirty books and more than 100 articles on film, and appears regularly in national media outlets discussing film and culture trends. Frame by Frame is a collection of his thoughts on a number of those topics. To contact Prof. Dixon for an interview, reach him at 402.472.6064 or wdixon1@unl.edu. Visit him at his website wheelerwinstondixon.com.

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