4 Comments

  1. “Widmark’s hood is mentally unhinged and full of hate, but even he in his pain-addled rantings at the climax is given a shot at justification, and his fate is pathetically cathartic, with Poitier sadistically applying with unbridled hate a tightening tourniquet around Widmark’s bleeding leg. The mis-en-scene of this closing scene is heavily symbolic: the makeshift tourniquet is fashioned from Darnell’s scarf and is tightened using Widmark’s gun after it has been emptied of bullets.”

    This is just one segment of a absolutely beautifully-written review of a film I remember well. That stretch of dialogue there too from the film’s last scene is unforgettable. Widmark plays one of the most heinous of all screen racists with blood-curdling believability, while Poitier makes a terrific debut. It should be noted that this is Ossie Davis’ first screen role too, and his wife Ruby Dee is cast here as well.

    Yes, I agree Darnell is excellent and what you say there about the theme being her redemption is of course dead-on.

    Great stuff here!

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