5 thoughts on “Cinematic Cities: From Frisco DOA in LA”

  1. A kinetic, expressionistic and economical noir that I’ve always compared to HIGH NOON, in its symetry and utilization of every minute of its running time. I have long lamented the failure of the film to secure the kind of print that would best showcase Rudolph Mate’s textured cinematography, which is dazzling in its overwhelming sense of immediacy. And then there’s Dimitri Tiomkin’s frenzied score, one of the best of it’s kind. The innovative opening tracking sequence through the hallway of a police station, where Edmund O’Brien arrives to report his own “murder” is justly celebrated, as is O’Brien’s on-the-run performance (shown here in all it’s breathtaking allure), as similar in its nerve-wrecking tension as Kevin McCarthy’s was in Don Siegel’s THE INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS six year later.
    The Image DVD print is acceptable, but this classic deserves an aggressive remaster.


  2. My bad. Actually, Ernest Laszlo was the camerman. I always think of Mate as a cinematographer, as he was one of the early greats, with THE PASSION OF JOAN OF ARC as his greatest achievement, with VAMPYR a close second. And he received Academy Award nominations in five successive years from 1941 to 1946 as best DP.


  3. This film has always been too campy for me. It has been awhile since I’ve seen it. I know most film noir experts and fans love this movie. Maybe I need to see it again soon. I just can’t get over the wolf whistles, unintentionally funny jazz club scene, and Neville Brand’s obsession with O’Brien’s belly.


  4. Hi! Tony,
    I’am not quite sure, but I think that I once read an article that stated the scene with Edmund O’Brien, running down the street (That You Have Posted Here) was improvised, but I’am not quite sure if this information is true or false.(I will have to try to verify this information.)

    By the way, while out there in the blogosphere, I communicated with an author who knew actor Edmund O’Brien personally.
    Nice “interspersed cuts” from the film…D.O.A.
    Thanks, for sharing!
    DeeDee 😉


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