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The Racket [DVD]
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Mobster Nick Scanlon (Robert Ryan) has bribed several local government and law-enforcement officials to make it easy for him to carry out his rackets; and those that can t be bought, are ruthlessly rubbed out. But the arrival of a new police captain, the maverick, incorruptible Tom McQuigg (Robert Mitchum) spells danger for Scanlon s mob. With the city s prosecuting attorney and police detective Turk (William Conrad of Canon fame) in Scanlon s employ, McQuigg's attempts to clean up the city are doomed to failure, until he persuades a sexy nightclub singer Irene Hayes (Lizabeth Scott) to testify against Scanlon. But can McQuigg prevent Irene and his honest officers from the revenge of the mob?
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Top Customer Reviews
At the time of its making, the film had a cast list that cried out as a roll for film noir/crime movie big hitters: Robert Mitchum (Out of the Past), Robert Ryan (Crossfire), Lizabeth Scott (Pitfall) and William Talman (Armoured Car Robbery), while in support there was the likes of William Conrad (The Killers), Ray Collins (Leave Her to Heaven) and Virginia Huston (also Out of the Past). Even looking at the directors who contributed on the production sees some fine genre credentials: John Cromwell (Dead Reckoning), Nicholas Ray (In a lonely Place), Mel Ferrer (The Secret Fury) and Tay Garnett (The Postman Always Rings Twice). But too many cooks can often spoil the broth, such is the case here.
Solid enough story that's unspectacular in its execution, a choppy yet just about watchable experience, and certainly a softer crime movie than it really ought to have been. It has often been coined as being a hard-hitting melodrama, but the decent thriller sequences are cloaked by a narrative that actually doesn't flow with any conviction. There's also the odd casting of Mitchum as a good guy to get around, and the film doesn't achieve that, namely because Mitchum plays it distinctly unenthusiastically.Read more ›
Starring two of Hollywood's great actors in opposing roles, Robert Mitchum as Police Captain Tom McQuigg, a good, honest cop, moved from Precinct to Precinct because he is straight and 'won't look the other way' when foul deeds are perpetrated, he is opposed by Robert Ryan as Nick Scanlon, a ruthless mobster with a poisonous network of doers, who 'run errands,' at his behest.
The plot starts with the Senate Crime Committee, which has met and decided that their city needs cleaning up of corrupt officials and organised criminal rackets that threaten to move in. The city's Chief Prosecutor bravely asserts he will act with hard evidence, which will be not easy to get hold of.
Set into this inferno of sleaze, is Captain Tom McQuigg, an honest and ruthless Police Detective, who is not afraid to kick in doors, even if that door belongs to Nick Scanlon - and he does kick in Scanlon's door. McQuigg cannot be bought off or warned off - it takes very direct, personal action against his home for Mc Quigg to know that Scanlon has fallen for the bait.
When ambitious Police Officer Johnson lifts Scanlon's brother for autocrime, Nick is in a cleft stick - whether to bail out his brother who wants to marry a showgirl, despite Nick paying for fancy college education for his brother, or let justice be done. With the ever present Scanlon lackey Davis producing writs on Scanlon's behalf at the drop of a hat, it looks like McQuigg is going to have a difficult job keeping anyone behind bars or out of circulation.Read more ›
Eddie Mueller's audio commentary on the Region 1 NTSC DVD that's part of Warner's Film Noir Classic Collection Volume Three is quite excellent and well worth listening to, but is absent from the UK PAL DVD.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A splendid example of Film Noir, a tight and suspenseful script, superb acting by a top rate cast who are brilliant in these type of roles. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Richard