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Friday, March 29, 2013

Jigsaw (1949)

When a print shop owner is murdered, it's deemed a suicide. But a journalist (Myron McCormick, THE HUSTLER) believes the man was killed by a fascist racist organization. But when he is killed investigating into the matter, his best friend, an assistant D.A. (Franchot Tone), is determined to break the case wide open. This noir-ish thriller, like CROSSFIRE before it, attempts to meld a socially conscious statement with a hard boiled crime movie but is nowhere near as successful as that 1947 film. Directed by Fletcher Markle (Disney's THE INCREDIBLE JOURNEY), it's rather heavy handed in its message and rather obvious in its narrative. It's main asset is that it's economical in its story telling and gets it done in 73 minutes! Somehow the film's honorable intentions were enough to rope several big names into doing cameos: Henry Fonda as a snippy waiter, Burgess Meredith as a bartender, John Garfield as a smart aleck pedestrian, Marsha Hunt as a secretary and in an in joke, Marlene Dietrich in the audience of a nightclub called The Blue Angel. With Doe Avedon (THE HIGH AND THE MIGHTY) as the good girl, Jean Wallace as the femme fatale, Marc Lawrence and Robert Gist.

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