The Killer is Loose 1956

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The Killer is Loose 1956

Post by garyleeoz on Thu Dec 10, 2015 5:29 am

I found this movie on Youtube ... it's a crime thriller starring Joseph Cotten, Rhonda Fleming and Wendell Corey plus a few familiar faces from the 1950s TV world (John Larch, Alan Hale Jr, Arthur Space, Virginia Christine, Stanley Adams). I was interested in it because of the Director, Budd Boetticher, who is better known for directing the later Randolph Scott Westerns. Most of the movie looks very conventional, like a 1950s B/W TV show ... it doesn't look like "film noir", except for the climax which takes place at night in the rain.

Corey plays a bank clerk/robber who becomes "unhinged" when the Police (Cotten in particular) accidentally kills his wife in a shootout. One weird thing about this movie are the "little things" that seem out of place for a crazed killer ... eg. a guy who pats a little dog can't be all bad.

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Re: The Killer is Loose 1956

Post by Bruce R on Sat Dec 12, 2015 1:24 am

It's been 3 years since I viewed this film, but made the comment "need more noir elements and less 'crime drama' type stories."  Also noted "the police work in terms of storming doors, etc., just doesn't hold up."

Although Keaney includes it in his film noir guide (he was very inclusive), he only gave it a 1.5.

I think Gary and I are pretty much in agreement on this one.  He didn't give it a recommendation and I can't say I do either.

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Re: The Killer is Loose 1956

Post by garyleeoz on Sat Dec 12, 2015 3:44 am

I thought the movie was interesting enough for me to write a Post about it. (ps. I've decided not to mention any bad movies that I've seen ... unfortunately I've seen too many of them.)

It definitely isn't Film Noir ... unless the viewer thinks that Wendell Corey is the real Hero of the movie and that the world has perversely turned against him (??). Maltin gives it "3 stars out of 4" and makes special mention of Corey's performance as both "scary and pathetic" as well as "excellent L.A. location photography". Unfortunately his character isn't "Mad Dog Earl" so I don't think we're ever meant to take his side even though the movie sometimes hints at it (ah, the subtext !) ... especially when the "Good Guys" are so bland/generic.

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Re: The Killer is Loose 1956

Post by Bruce R on Mon Dec 14, 2015 12:18 am

You raise a very interesting point, Gary. What about films we don't think are worth viewing?

I think it's worthwhile to post about films you don't think are worth viewing. With all the films available, I'd certainly appreciate knowing if someone on the Board doesn't think something was worthwhile. Afterall, I only have so much time. I have not viewed films based upon reviews on the Board.

And, a negative review doesn't necessarily stop me from viewing something, but may give me pause--a welcome pause, at that.

Again, Keaney cast a very wide net in terms of what was noir or not. He absolutely erred on the side on inclusion, so there can certainly be disagreement on some of this choices.

But I'd prefer having something included and then get the opportunity to make a choice rather than not having the chance to make the choice at all.

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