Brute Force (1947) 4.36/5 (2)


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Rating: The Good – 77.2
Genre: Film-Noir
Duration: 98 mins
Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Hume Cronyn, Sam Levene

Burt Lancaster’s brooding performance as a convict determined to escape a brutal prison is one his best. Brute Force is not your typical prison movie as it’s a far darker and grittier examination of the inner turmoil of the hard timer. Jules Dassin captures the oppressive feel of the prison environment wonderfully and there are some sumptuous shots littered throughout. Richard Brook’s screenplay is also a treat for the ears and along with Dassin’s ingenuity, it ties the back stories of the different characters together nicely. It all builds up to a real bang at the end which will have you on the edge of your seat. The cast are great one and all and in addition to Lancaster, Hume Cronyn’s against type turn as the sadistic prison screw deserves special mention. However, Brute Force is really about the big man who yet again manages to effortlessly let every inch of his massive frame fill whatever room he’s in with a sense of explosive danger.

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