Classic Raymond Chandler noir about a demobbed serviceman whose wife has loosened her morals during the war years. Johnny Morrison (Alan Ladd) comes home from the war and discovers his wife, Helen (Doris Dowling), has been doing her bit on the home front, sure enough. Eddie Harwood (Howard Da Silva), owner of the local nightclub, for one, seems to have had an easier war under her ministrations. He goes off like a cheap Chinese pistol on her one night and storms out of their house. Helen gets wacked the same night and Johnny's in the frame. His only chance of avoiding doing bird is to find the real killer himself. The amoral Eddie's wife Joyce (Veronica Lake) and two old army buddies volunteer to help him. The film suffers not a bit for the fact that Raymond Chandler apparently wrote the script (his first written exclusively for the screen) roaring drunk from start to finish!
United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2.4 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), English ( Subtitles ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Black & White, Interactive Menu, SYNOPSIS: This neat, fast-paced perfectly cast film noir reflects the hard-boiled, grim wit of the author of its screenplay, Raymond Chandler. Johnny Morrison (Alan Ladd) returns from the war to find his wife Helen (Doris Dowling) having a party and in the arms of another man. Johnny and Helen have a terrible fight, and later Helen is found dead. Johnny must prove his innocence and he enlists the aid of Joyce Haywood (Veronica Lake), the ex-wife of Helen's lover. Pursued by the cops, and never sure if he is being set-up for the murder, Johnny finally solves the murder and clears his name. Alan Ladd is at his hard-boiled, no-nonsense best as Johnny and Veronica Lake is, as always, the perfect noir femme-fatale, mysterious and alluring. Nicely directed by George Marshall, the film moves with great pace to an exciting, satisfying conclusion. The screenplay, the only one written by Chandler directly for the screen, was nominated for an Academy Award. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Oscar Academy Awards, ...The Blue Dahlia