director Nicholas Ray
Robert Ryan stars as a tough as nails cop, a cop so tough that he gets rapped for police brutality. The city was getting to him, see? So his boss sends him into the mountains in search of a killer of a young girl, in tow with her vengeful and bloodthirsty father (Ward Bond). But he meets the killer’s blind sister (Ida Lupino) and is moved toward a less brutal justice for the young, mentally-deficient killer.
So, that’s the story. But this movie is amazing.
It’s one of Nicholas Ray’s early works, along with They Live By Night (1949) and In a Lonely Place (1950), are major and unique samples of the best of film noir. It’s also scripted by A. I. Bezzerides who also wrote the terrific noir Thieves’ Highway (1949) for Jules Dassin and went on to write Robert Aldrich’s amazing noir Kiss Me Deadly (1955).
Pedigrees aside, this movie is excellent. But it’s got it’s pedigrees too.