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Crossfire (1947)

Unrated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 15 August 1947 (USA)
A man is murdered, apparently by one of a group of soldiers just out of the army. But which one? And why?

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(screenplay), (adapted from a novel by)
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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Mary Mitchell
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Bill
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Detective (as Richard Powers)
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Harry
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Miss Lewis
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Storyline

Homicide Capt. Finlay finds evidence that one or more of a group of demobilized soldiers is involved in the death of Joseph Samuels. In flashbacks, we see the night's events from different viewpoints as Sergeant Keeley investigates on his own, trying to clear his friend Mitchell, to whom circumstantial evidence points. Then the real, ugly motive for the killing begins to dawn on both Finlay and Keeley... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Sensational? No, it's dynamite! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 August 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cradle of Fear  »

Box Office

Budget:

$250,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$1,300,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Gloria Grahame later said that Ginny in this movie was her favorite role. See more »

Goofs

Set after World War II, Finlay tells a long story to Leroy about how his grandfather was murdered 100 years previously in 1848. Finlay would have to be in his 60s or 70s for that to be true and he clearly is not; it must have been his great-grandfather that was murdered. See more »

Quotes

Police Captain Finlay: This business about hating Jews comes in a lot of different sizes. There's the 'you can't join our country club' kind. The 'you can't live around here' kind. The 'you can't work here' kind. Because we stand for all these, we get Monty's kind. He grows out of all the rest... Hating is always insane, always senseless.
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Connections

Featured in The Silver Screen: Color Me Lavender (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

"The best years of our lives"turned film noir.
15 September 2002 | by See all my reviews

SPOILERS Not only does this movie boasts three Roberts,but it also possesses all that makes a film noir great:a murky sticky atmosphere, a fine supporting cast , a lot of characters we remember even if they appear on the screen barely fifteen minutes(Gloria Grahame and her husband for instance).The first scene sets the tone:a murder ;we can only see the shadows on the wall.

Edward Dmytryk,whose career would dismally end (the likes of "Shalako") ,was here at the height of his powers:he films his story with a stunning virtuosity and there are unforgettable moments:the scene in the Jew's apartment seen thru the eyes of the drunken soldier;the way the director films brilliant Robert Ryan ,using dizzying high and low angle shots.He's arguably the stand-out and his performance is really spooky;the conversation during which you can only see Ryan's face in a mirror;all these stairs which seem to be death traps.

It seems that these soldiers can only survive in the dark:in the nightclubs,in Grahame's seedy apartment,in a movie theater.They are just about at breaking point,as if they had come from hell to wind up in another one.But one should notice that ,at least in the first half of the movie,their camaraderie,their solidarity remain intact:brothers in arms indeed;the police are the enemy.

Robert Young's cop is a thousand miles above your usual detective routine:the scenarists achieves the feat of including his own story (actually his grandfather)in this murder mystery.He really pleads for the right to difference:today the Jews,tomorrow the hillbillies from Tennessee ,then the guys with striped ties...His words have a contemporary feel:it's because they don't know the Jews,the fags (check the novel)that some people use them as scapegoats.

Robert Ryan's portrayal is one of the most frightening of all the film noir genre.It's interesting to compare his part with the one he plays in Robert Wise's "odds against tomorrow"(1959).In both movies ,his character is a racist or anti-Semite;in both movies no explanation.Ryan was known for his very liberal ideas,what a clever actor he was!


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