Crossfire 03/20/21

The Warner Archive Collection

Hollywood learns to imbed a social message into a crime thriller. John Paxton’s adaptation of Richard Brooks’ neat murder tale is solid noir because it sheds light on the malaise of returning soldiers. No parades and confetti here: Robert Ryan is the hateful bigot but the other characters live amid equally shadowy values — laid-back Robert Mitchum, unhappy bar girl Gloria Grahame. Edward Dmytryk puts a polish on a fine screenplay with a fresh viewpoint, that avoids thriller clich├ęs. With Robert Young, Paul Kelly, Sam Levene, Jacqueline White, Steve Brodie & William Phipps; on Blu-ray from The Warner Archive Collection.