Director: Robert Siodmak
Starring: Burt Lancaster, Yvonne De Carlo, Dan Duryea, Stephen McNally
Genre: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
“When you Double-Cross a Double-Crosser…IT’S A CRISS-CROSS!”
What would a man do for love? Probably anything. We all have been there at some point; we must not be overwhelmed by feelings, especially when our life is at stake. That’s the moral of this great noir movie directed by one of the geniuses of this genre – Robert Siodmak.
The story follows Steve Thompson (Burt Lancaster), a young truck driver, who is still in love with Anna (Yvonne De Carlo), his ex-wife, now the girlfriend of Slim Dundee (Dan Duryea), a mob gang leader. Steve and Anna broke up the first time because of their daily fights, even though they used to reconcile at the end of the day. These fights killed their first love story. But now, after a year, Steve still loves her, and she still loves him.
But she tangled up in a relationship with one of the most dangerous mob leaders. Nothing good can get out of here, especially when she meets again Steve. They plan to run away together with a very risky plan during the heist of an armored truck. From now on, everything starts to complicate, and their chances to be together decrease slowly. What do you think, will they end up together? You’ll have to watch it to see for yourself.
On the acting part, I’d say Burt Lancaster is the star of this film. He is in the spotlight even in the scenes where Yvonne De Carlo should be. His role represents the idealistic man, who would do anything to be with the woman he loves. He stops thinking about himself, he would give up all the money in the world, if he could have his love in his arms. On the other hand, Anna is a character who knows that you can’t live only with love; she is not willing to give up everything for love. These characters have a lot of internal conflicts, which are represented exceptionally by the protagonists.
I think the story is the key factor for this film-noir masterpiece. A simple but dynamic story where suspense is present in every scene, and with an ending that makes you think about the decisions they’ve made throughout the film. The music contributes to the whole atmosphere along with the cigarette smoke. A fun fact about one scene – you will see Tony Curtis (his first appearance on the screen) dancing with Yvonne De Carlo.
Taking all in all, this is one of the best film-noirs, a top 10 for sure. I’d watch it again with enthusiasm, and that says a lot about this film. I hope you’ll give it a chance because you won’t regret it! Stay safe, and enjoy it!