Problem Pictures

film 1 of 5


Draft Review by Dean Duncan Jun 16, 2015

Exceptionally dark visual design, beautifully paced and nuanced dialogue, menacingly understated deliveries and directions, excellent performances–Young’s man with a pipe, Mitchum’s extremely relaxed moral compass, Ryan’s usual menace–a generally satisfying civics lesson, painfully connected to the Holocaust even as it displaces more urgent (in the US) issues of how blacks are treated, not to mention the homosexual of the original novel; in the Jewish Mr. Samuel’s apartment they’re playing Strauss, I think (culture, sensitivity), which is then replace by hoodlum jazz, the fake address sting is a nice (illegal in a court of law?) solution, Gloria Grahame’s requisite tart and the wife seem like so much genre dressing, but at 86 minutes, how lean can you get?