Welcome to William Schoell's GREAT OLD MOVIES blog. Feel free to leave a comment regardless of the date the review was posted -- I read 'em all. Or if you prefer -- and especially if you have any questions directly for me -- email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. Click on a label link (labels can be found at the bottom of each post) to find other movies from that year, the star, that director or genre and so on. Or enter a title, director, genre, star or supporting player in the small Blogger "search blog" box at the far left up above and click search blog. [NOTE: While this blog mostly reviews films -- and TV shows -- that are at least twenty-five years old, we do cover films up until the present day.] HAVE FUN AND THANKS FOR DROPPING BY. William.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
TOO LATE FOR TEARS aka KILLER BAIT
TOO LATE FOR TEARS (1949/aka Killer Bait). Director: Byron Haskin.
This picture was re-released under the much more appropriate title Killer Bait. Jane and Alan Palmer (Lizabeth Scott and Arthur Kennedy) are driving to a party when suddenly someone throws a valise full of loot into the back of their convertible. Jane wants to keep quiet and keep the money, while Alan thinks it would be better to turn it into the police. While they decide what to do, Alan puts the money in a baggage check at the train station. Then Danny Fuller (Dan Duryea) comes calling, wanting his money back ...
Killer Bait is full of lots of intriguing plot twists, none of which I will give away here. Suffice it to say it's a thoroughly absorbing crime thriller that boasts perhaps Scott's finest and most ferocious performance. Dan Duryea is equally outstanding, and Kennedy gives his usual fine support. The normally dull Don Defore was a surprise as a military friend of Alan's, and Kristine Miller is lovely as Alan's sister, Kathy. While it might have been nice to have this directed by Hitchcock, Haskin does keep things moving at an absorbing pace. Roy Huggin's screenplay, based on his Saturday Evening Post serial, is almost completely unpredictable and full of nice touches and dimensional characters. "Jane Palmer" is a fascinating portrait of a certain type of personality.
Verdict: Excellent performances, great script, make this one of the best film noirs ever. ***1/2.