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"T-Men" is presented as a docu-drama, complete with a stentorian narrative voice-over of the type associated with US TV dramas like "The Untouchables", "Dragnet" etc.
A pair of undercover Treasury Department agents (Dennis O`Keefe and Alfred Ryder) go undercover to infiltrate and bring to justice a violent counterfeiting ring. Although this is pretty much a gangster/ crime thriller, the photographic style, camera work and lighting lift it firmly into the world of film noir. The cinematographer on this production was John Alton who also worked on "The Big Combo"(1955) and "Raw Deal"(1948); it is full of text-book noir lighting effects. The drama is taut and absorbing, masterfully directed by Anthony Mann.
The picture quality is of a good standard throughought with only a few lines and blemishes here and there; sound is generally good and the original aspect ratio is retained.
This is an excellent little thriller which will be of interest to lovers of all crime genres and particularly lovers of film noir.
Warmly recommended!
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on 2 December 2004
Thanks VCI for doing justice to this movie. The quality is great. Sharp, crisp images and great hiss-free sound.
This film sucked me in. I thought everything noirly realistic, such as dialogue and settings. There are twists and turns that really kept me interested.
You even get extras. A short documentary and some trailers.
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on 3 December 2004
This is just a great movie. It made a Dennis O'Keefe fan out of me. Anthony Mann directed this tale about undercover treasury agents. For a movie made in 1947 it is pretty realistic. There was one scene that really suprised me. VCI has done a great job with the transfer. The image is crisp and there is no hiss. There is also a short documentary. A great value.
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on 16 March 2017
Hmmmm,nothing special here really.Standard stuff.Don't understand all the fuzz bout this one.Yeah it's worth watching one time only.I had my copy for years before I watched it and I was not impressed but that's just me.Would not recommend anybody to spend twenty bucks on this.
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on 28 April 2015
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on 31 January 2017
A great movie!
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on 22 July 2016
Very good and well made film, enjoy watching it was a great film.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 15 January 2011
Eagle-Lion Films presents "T-MEN" (15 December 1947) (92 min/B&W) (Fully Restored/Dolby Digitally Remastered) -- Deception is the theme that resonates throughout the story of Mann's film and he cleverly delivers that premise of duplicity right into the lap of the audience --- Treasury Agents Dennis O'Brien (Dennis O'Keefe) and Tony Genaro (Alfred Ryder) are put on the case of cracking the major counterfeiting ring that spans between the mob in Los Angeles and Detroit --- O'Brien and Genaro are assigned to begin in Detroit where they research the local crime history and create their undercover identities of two hoods from a defunct Detroit gang.

Wallace Ford gives a standout performance --- His Schemer Burns was outstanding. This has to be an all-time favorite noirs from director Anthony Mann.

Under the production staff of:
Anthony Mann [Director]
John C. Higgins [Screenplay]
Virginia Kellogg [Story\
Aubrey Schenck [Producer]
Turner Shelton [Associate producer]
Paul Sawtell [Original Music]
John Alton [Cinematographer]
Fred Allen [Film Editor]

1. Anthony Mann [aka: Emil Anton Bundesmann] - [Director]
Date of Birth: 30 June 1906 - San Diego, California
Date of Death: 29 April 1967 - Berlin, Germany

the cast includes:
Dennis O'Keefe - Dennis O'Brien aka Vannie Harrigan
Mary Meade - Evangeline
Alfred Ryder - Tony Genaro aka Tony Galvani
Wallace Ford - The Schemer (as Wally Ford)
June Lockhart - Mary Genaro
Charles McGraw - Moxie

Mr. Jim's Ratings:
Quality of Picture & Sound: 5 Stars
Performance: 5 Stars
Story & Screenplay: 5 Stars
Overall: 5 Stars [Original Music, Cinematography & Film Editing]

Total Time: 92 min on DVD ~ Eagle-Lion Films ~ (10/18/2005)
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T-Men is directed by Anthony Mann and adapted by John C. Higgins from a suggested story written by Virginia Kellogg. It stars Dennis O'Keefe, Alfred Ryder, Mary Meade, Wallace Ford, June Lockhart, Charles McGraw and Art Smith. Music is by Paul Sawtell and cinematography by John Alton. Plot finds O'Keefe and Ryder as dedicated Treasury agents assigned to go undercover to break up the counterfeiting ring at the center of The Shanghai Paper Case. Posing as low ranked hoodlums left over from a long thought of disbanded gang, the two men find themselves immersed in a dark underworld of violence and deceit. Getting in was easy, coming out alive is a different matter.

The first pairing of director Anthony Mann and master cinematographer John Alton, T-Men is tough semi documentary type film noir that manages to break free of its plot simplicity confines to become a fine movie. Beginning with a foreword delivered by a stoic Treasury official, the film initially feels it's going to be standard gangster/cops fare. But once our two intrepid agents go undercover and we hit the underworld, Mann and Alton shift the tone and the film becomes a different beast. The psychological aspects start to dominate the narrative, as both O'Keefe and Ryder cast aside their humanity to be at one with the grubby world. Under examination is the thin line between the law and the lawless, our two good guys are battling inner conflicts, their natural good instincts, but being bad has come easy. The edges of the frame have become blurred.

The psychological tints would mean nothing without Alton's photography, it's the key element and therefore becomes essential viewing for film noir aficionados. His deep focus chiaroscuro compositions are very striking, and tell us more visually than anything being said vocally. How he frames the heroic agents in the same shadowy light as the bad guys helps keep us the audience in deep with the shift from good world to bad world. This mise-en-scène style has taken over, it's a life force all of its own, and as good as O'Keefe, Ryder and McGraw (always great to see him playing the muscle) are, it's the photography that is the main character here. Mann does his bit, also, sweaty close ups and up-tilt camera work adding to the general disquiet hanging heavy in every room. While his construction of the films most shocking scene, involving a steam bath, is so good its been copied numerous times since.

Not as gritty as Raw Deal, which Mann, Alton and O'Keefe made the following year, but still as tough as old boots and cloaked deliciously with a shadowy beauty. 8/10
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on 9 December 2014
This review os for the Sony/ClassicMedia issue. I would have given this 5 stars for Alton's cinematography alone, which is stunning. The movie is clunky in places - little more than Treasury Dept propaganda - and there are some very odd directorial decisions. For example, in one scene two characters are talking, but you don't hear them - instead you have to put up with the rather arch voiceover telling you what they're saying.

At other times the action is taut and extremely well-paced. As a noir, it's definitely a second-string film lifted by the spectacular photography.

All of which is badly let down by this truly abysmal transfer. It looks like a bad 16mm print transferred to video on a dirty telecine. Contrast is lousy and image stability is terrible, with the picture wobbling all over the place. There's barely a second of the movie that is stable. How Sony has the nerve to charge people for this is beyond me.
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