Crime Wave (1954)
What a surprise. There was a drift in the 1950s from highly controlled studio to highly controlled location shooting, and then, as we see here, to a slightly looser location style that used more of the ambient qualities. It isn't quite cinema verite (or some other documentary-influenced style more common in Europe), and it may be more a product of budget than aesthetics, but it really works. It's most of all realistic.
Director Andre De Toth handles all the moving elements with fast precision. The photography is, by necessity, smart and crisp, but the lighting is less dramatic (less noir, you might say) than most crime films. But again, this is a indication of where the industry was moving, on on De Toth's intentions to avoid over stylizing. Other mid 1950s crime films also show shifts from the dramatics of the noirs that define the genre, one example being another Sterling Hayden, "The Killing," directed by Kubrick two years later. The use of identifiable locations for the shoots is part of their unique draw. In Crime Wave, the L.A. streets are used in a simple, unhyped way.
The story is a meat and potatoes police drama, with Hayden working the homicide squad. He's terse and experienced, and has the thugs in his sights almost from the start. This puts a lot of the focus on the bad guys, and they come off as highly believable. They do crimes to survive, without romanticizing the criminal, and with lots of little mistakes and harping back and forth. And they know they are on the run, dragging a couple of innocent people along for the terrifying ride.
Crime Wave (1953) 1080p YIFY Movie
Crime Wave (1953) 1080p
Crime Wave is a movie starring Gene Nelson, Sterling Hayden, and Phyllis Kirk. Reformed parolee Steve Lacey is caught in the middle when a wounded former cellmate seeks him out for shelter.
IMDB: 7.30 Likes
The Synopsis for Crime Wave (1953) 1080p
Three San Quentin escapees (Penny, Hastings and Morgan) kill a cop in a gas-station holdup. Wounded, Morgan flees through black-shadowed streets to the handiest refuge: with former cellmate Steve Lacey, who's paroled, with a new life and lovely wife, and can't afford to be caught associating with old cronies. But homicide detective Sims wants to use Steve to help him catch Penny and Hastings, who in turn extort his help in a bank job. Is there no way out for Steve?
The Director and Players for Crime Wave (1953) 1080p
The Reviews for Crime Wave (1953) 1080p
A gritty, realistic, streets-of-LA crime filmReviewed bysecondtakeVote: 8/10
Crime Wave (1954)
Simply one of the best hard boiled noir films I have seen. Sterling Hayden is, as usual, excellent, while a very young Charles Bronson is surprisingly good as a 'punk' hood. Seems to feature nearly all scenes as location, or hand-held camera and it seems at times like a particularly effective episode of a 50s TV cop show - except that the content is much more brutal and sharp. This is a dark, dark film both in storyline and in the quite brilliant photography. I'd really love to see this neglected classic come out on a restored print on DVD. Isn't it time Criterion updated their 'noir' list? This cries out for restoration and a re-release.
Andre De Toth a Hungarian by birth was renowned by all who knew him as a bit of character and a fun guy to be around, unless that is you were a producer at which point De Toth showed his argumentative side, a side of his character that saw him loose an eye in a pre war anti Nazi rally. De Toth was given a one off film deal with Warners to make a big budget film, Bogie,Cagney and Ava Gardner were proposed for this particular venture, to be filmed over 35 days, De Toth said he didn't want any of them and insisted he could make the film in 15 days with Sterling Hayden in the lead role of Det. Lt. Sims, De Toth's insistence paid off and he brought the completed film home two days ahead of schedule, despite this the film was shelved for 2 years and when eventually released failed at the box office, up until about ten years ago it was pretty much a forgotten film, with only one print known to exist. Filmed pretty much all on location around Los Angeles in a stunning verite style by Bert Glennon, the film has some truly stunning nightscapes with some very inventive lighting and tells the tale of Steve Lacey(Gene Nelson), an ex con, but a good guy at heart, who is now married to the stalwart Ellen(Phyllis Kirk) and is successfully going straight. Lacey receives a late night phone call from someone who doesn't identify themselves, Lacey worries that its his past come back to haunt him, he isn't wrong, within minutes a wounded ex cell mate of his from San Quentin is at his door looking for refuge, his wounds the results of a nearby brutal killing of a policeman at a gas station holdup. Before Lacey can do anything his guest dies, he rings his parole officer looking for help, but before he can do the right thing, the belligerent toothpick chewing Sims arrives at his door determined to pin the crime on him, the dead body only compounds Lacey's fate. Hayden is superb in the role and gives a very naturalistic performance in what is in some ways a semi documentary style of film, there's also a host of great supporting roles for the likes of Ted de Corsia and Charles Bronson who complete the hold up gang and also a really entertaining and utterly scene stealing "performance" by the truly psychotic Timothy Carey. Crime Wave is really well paced hard boiled Noir and at a paltry 73 minutes it passes all too quickly, it also has the distinction of being a rather important influence on Kubrick's The Killing which has a similar look and also most of the same cast. As my first viewing from the newly released Warner Film Noir Volume 4 boxset, I found it an unmitigated success, there's also a hilarious and very entertaining commentary from Noir luminaries Eddie Muller and James Ellroy, although the latters barking like a dog does grate just a little