THE GANGSTER
1947, Warner Bros., 84 min, USA, Dir: Gordon Wiles

Barry Sullivan gives an intense performance as Shubunka, a two-bit, paranoid Scarface trying to stave off elimination by the encroaching syndicate. This Poverty Row product compresses the rise-and-fall gangster scenario into a moody bit of noir theater, bolstered by a supporting cast that blasts its way through the stylized dialogue of uncredited scripter Dalton Trumbo. Co-starring ice skater-turned-actress Belita.


AFRAID TO TALK
MERRY-GO-ROUND
1932, Universal, 69 min, USA, Dir: Edward L. Cahn

Gangsters and politicians, worried their allegiances will be revealed, conspire to destroy a innocent bellhop (Eric Linden) who witnesses a murder in the penthouse suite. A scathing, uncompromising and still timely look at the corruption inherent in American big-city politics. Indelible performances from a vast cast, headed by Louis Calhern and Edward Arnold. Screenplay by Albert Maltz and George Sklar, based on their play. Directed by Edward L. Cahn. NOT ON DVD


JOHNNY ALLEGRO
1949, Sony Repertory, 81 min, USA, Dir: Ted Tetzlaff

In this underrated George Raft vehicle, the actor plays the title reformed crook, sent undercover to a Caribbean island hiding American gangsters. (Scripters Karen De Wolff and Guy Endore must have vacationed in Havana!) Allegro’s job: Take down Mr. Big (George Macready). Once Mrs. Big (Nina Foch) falls for Raft, things spiral into MOST DANGEROUS GAME territory, with Macready breaking out his bow and arrows! Directed by Ted Tetzlaff (THE WINDOW). NOT ON DVD


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