Sunday, January 1, 2017


Is what 2017 will be. Raw for us all ~ the few good and the many bad.

Anthony Mann understood. In 1948's Raw Deal a man (Dennis O'Keefe) breaks out of prison, an escape arranged for by his crime boss (Raymond Burr) who owes the man $50,000 and hopes he will die in the attempt, but carried out by the prisoner's girlfriend (Claire Trevor). The couple go on the run, taking with them a hostage (Marcia Hunt). The prisoner and the hostage fall in love.

The picture is a harsh and tragic love triangle among a doomed escaped con and two very different, needy women. Under Mann's direction and John Alton's astonishing photography, Raw Deal is a bleak, woeful, fiercely beautiful cry of despair. And perhaps the most forgotten great movie of the 1940s. As always with Mann, his characters struggle to survive within a ruthless, tyrannical system, for the most part individually, while trying to maintain some sense of principle and dignity. 

Happy New Year!