Force of Evil (1948)

Force of Evil (1948)

Many have written long and more eloquently than I ever could on this great film from Abraham Polonsky, which transcends the noir genre and is as close as Hollywood ever got to social realism. John Garfield brings his signature honesty and gritty complexity to the film. That the careers of these artists were destroyed in their prime by rabid political hacks and the narrow bigotry of Hollywood moguls is tragic.

Force of Evil was the first film that Polonsky directed, and the assurance displayed in its construction is breathtaking: from the lighting and camera-work, to the editing and pacing. The hard-edged and almost jazz score by David Raksin is used to brilliant effect.

These are some of the best scenes in the movie:

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