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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 25 November 2010
*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Boomerang is directed by Elia Kazan, based on a story written by Fulton Oursler (Anthony Abbot), with the screenplay written by Richard Murphy. It stars Dana Andrews, Jane Wyatt, Lee J. Cobb, Arthur Kennedy, Ed Begley & Karl Malden. Plot is based around a true story, a case that even today remains unsolved, where a priest was shot and murdered in Bridgeport, Connecticut in 1924. A vagrant and ex-serviceman (here played by Kennedy) was indicted for the murder. The evidence at first glance seemed solid, but the state attorney (Andrews here) on prosecution duties wasn't convinced and set about deconstructing the evidence. Much to the shock of his superiors and others with vested interests.

Gripping melodrama told in semi-documentary style and filmed on location in Stamford, Connecticut (Kazan was refused permission to actually film in Bridgeport). As a crime story it's as solid as it gets, dripping with realism and filling out the plot with may notable points of reference. Political pressures, police procedural, corruption, unstable witnesses, bitter dames and of course an innocent man on trial for his life (we know the latter since it's based on facts and Kazan lets us in on it early on). It's all in there for a taut, suspenseful and noirishly well told story. The acting is top dollar, both from the leads and an impressive supporting cast. While even tho more time should have been afforded the "dodgy dealings" aspects, it slots into place nicely enough to still leave us splendidly agitated at the no resolution outcome. It's all in the build up and execution. 7/10
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on 14 March 2014
Let's get this straight, moggie. You mistakenly purchased a DVD that your region-coded player can't play. Annoyed that the DVD wasn't an all-region disc (ignoring the fact that most DVDs are regionally coded), you give THE FILM a one-star rating!

That is mind-numbingly absurd!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 10 May 2016
EXCELLENT! I was quite impressed by this 1947 oldie but goldie "film noir" mixing a criminal investigation with politics. Below, more of my impressions, with some limited SPOILERS.

PRECISION: this is the review of "Fox Film Noir" Region 1 NTSC USA+Canada version. It will NOT play on Region 2 PAL Europe + UK equipement.

This film is based on a real story which happened 4 February 1924 in Bridgegport, Connecticut. That evening a respected priest, Father Dahme, was shot and killed on the street, without any apparent motive. The investigation which followed was a quite dramatic one, but I will not say here more to avoid SPOILERS and I advise you to not research the whole thing before watching the film. In "Boomerang" the events were a little bit amended, but in general lines the film follows the real story.

The film is relatively short (88 minutes) but very well organised and filled with events. It was only the second film Elia Kazan directed, but it is clear that even at that stage he had a great mastery of his trade. All actors did very well but two rise above the crowd - Dana Andrews, who plays Connecticut Attorney General supervising the investigation and Arthur Kennedy, who plays... well, somebody else.

There is a terrible political dilemma in this film. We are told in the beginning that a new administration was recently elected in the state, replacing a corrupt previous government. The terrible murder and the difficult investigation are now being used by the people who lost elections to prepare their comeback to the top of the government - and they are doing a helluva job about it. Which forces the new administration to ask itself a question: "How many angles can we cut in the name of greater good?"... It will be a difficult debate... I will say no more.

I will keep this review short, to avoid spoilers. I never heard about this film before but I am so glad that I discovered it. Notwithstanding some minor weaknesses of the scenario, it nevertheless IMPRESSED me! A recommended viewing. ENJOY!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 16 June 2015
Admittedly somewhat bizarrely titled, this 'fact-based’ 1947 film directed by Elia Kazan (and with an Oscar-nominated screenplay by Richard Murphy) is really (for me, at least) something of an undiscovered gem. Boomerang’s tale of Dana Andrews’ conscience-struck State Attorney, Henry Harvey, assigned to prosecute an 'open-and-shut’ murder case of a locally popular priest in ‘small-town USA’ (Bridgeport, Connecticut in reality) is really a very perceptive piece of drama, addressing a whole range of social issues including miscarriages of justice, political (and judicial) corruption, the power of the mob, criminal psychology and (even) treatment of war veterans – a number of elements which call to my mind some (recently watched) Fritz Lang films (M, Beyond A Reasonable Doubt). Kazan’s film is also heavy – at times, arguably, a little too heavy – on the mechanics of the judicial system which, coupled with the film’s unnecessary (and rather preachy) voiceover narration, lend Boomerang the feel (at times) of a pseudo-documentary.

The other big positive for the film is Kazan’s obviously fast-developing (this was only his third big screen excursion) skill at working with actors and here his cast is pretty much uniformly impressive. Andrews is once again solidly impressive (and typically underplayed) as Harvey – a man required to weigh up his own personal morality and convictions against his career ambitions and the wider political ramifications – Lee J Cobb is typically brilliant (one of Hollywood’s most underrated actors) as the cynical and surly cop heading up the murder investigation, Harold Robinson, and Arthur Kennedy also impressive as the accused war veteran, John Waldren. Women are rather relegated to perfunctory roles (I’m not sure how Jane Wyatt managed to secure ‘2nd billing’ for her minor role as Harvey’s wife, Madge) but there are many great cameos in amongst the corrupt politicians, pressmen, police and wider public – including those by Ed Begley, Robert Keith and Karl Malden.

The film’s concluding court-room sequence is also very dramatic (if a little terse) and, with Messrs. Cobb and Begley in attendance, calling to mind (the superior) Twelve Angry Men. Whilst not (for me) being an absolute classic, therefore, Boomerang has enough going for it in terms of acting, drama and social comment to make it well worth a watch.
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on 22 February 2015
A liberal social-conscience movie typical of Kazan. Clearly photographed and crisply directed with very decent performances by some of his usual crew (Lee J.Cobb especially) plus Dana Andrews. A bit obvious in some ways and the courtroom drama depends rather too much on the 'rabbits out of the hat' technique but it makes its point quickly and efficiently. Weirdly titled if you think about it.
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This film is based on a true story - a crime story set in the 1940's - another hit for Elia Kazan - a good role for Dana Andrews
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on 16 April 2015
Exremely wooden in parts, I found myself losing interest as a result.
Kazan is no Preminger, and the documentary style he attempts here fails miserably in my opinion.
The actors seem to just go through the motions, almost as though they are in a dream.
It isn't terriible, but it isn't a classic by a long chalk.
Andrews was brilliant in Laura, a film in a totally diferent class.
Avoid.
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on 28 January 2016
Fast shipping. Recommended
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on 27 April 2016
Perfect dvd thanks x
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on 14 July 2015
Excellent
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