Where the Sidewalk Ends


Action / Crime / Drama / Film-Noir

IMDb Rating 7.6 10 6015


Uploaded By: OTTO
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Gene Tierney as Morgan Taylor
Karl Malden as Lt. Thomas
Dana Andrews as Det. Mark Dixon
Neville Brand as Steve, Scalise Hood
720p 1080p
756.35 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 35 min
P/S 1 / 3
1.44 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 35 min
P/S 1 / 6

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Righty-Sock ([email protected]) 8 / 10

One of the best detective films of the Fifties!

Perhaps the most gripping and intelligent of crooked cop movies is Otto Preminger's 'Where the Sidewalks Ends,' from a really excellent script by Ben Hecht based on the novel 'Night Cry' by Frank Rosenberg...

Dana Andrews is the honest, tough New York policeman, always in trouble with his superiors because he likes his own strong-arm methods as much as he detests crooks... When he hit someone, his knuckles hurt... And the man he wants to hit is a smooth villain (Gary Merrill) who points up the title. 'Why are you always trying to push me in the gutter?' he asks Andrews. 'I have as much right on the sidewalk as you.'

Dana Andrew's obsession and neurosis are implanted in his hidden, painful discovery that he is the son of a thief... His deep hatred of criminals led him to use their own illegal methods to destroy them, and the pursuit of justice became spoiled in private vendetta...

By a twist of irony unique to the film itself, Dana Andrews and Gene Tierney of 'Laura' are united once more, and Andrews now seems to be playing the same detective a few years later, but no longer the romantic, beaten down by his job, by the cheap crooks... This time, he goes too far, and accidentally kills a suspect... The killing is accidental, the victim worthless, yet it is a crime that he knows can break him or send him to jail...

Using his knowledge of police procedure, he covers up his part in the crime, plants false clues, and tries to implicate a gang leader, but cannot avoid investigating the case himself... The double tension of following the larger case through to its conclusion without implicating himself in the murder, is beautifully maintained and the final solution is both logical, satisfying, and in no way a compromise...

The film is one of the best detective films of the 50's, with curious moral values, also one of Preminger's best...

Preminger uses a powerful storytelling technique, projecting pretentious camera angles and peculiar touches of the bizarre in order to externalize his suspense in realism...

Reviewed by bmacv 9 / 10

Preminger's grittier Big Apple tale fully the equal of his vaunted Laura

In Where The Sidewalk Ends, Otto Preminger reunites Dana Andrews and Gene Tierney, surely in hopes of recapturing the magic of his Laura. But they're wildly dissimilar films, set in different strata of New York (not to mention at opposite poles of the noir universe). A fine mist of the Gothic hovers over the upscale Manhattan of Laura, with its erotic obsession and faint whiff of necrophilia; Where The Sidewalk Ends is pure urban soot and grit befouling a town of basement apartments, steam rooms and parking garages.

But it's every bit as fine a movie as its revered forerunner, and dyed-in-the-wool noir (Laura, by contrast, one of the clutch of films from 1944 which the French first dubbed `noir,' was still very much a sophisticated murder mystery). Daylight enters only on very temporary sufferance, and director of photography Joseph LaShelle makes the most of the alleys and brownstones, the docks and the El. This is quintessential big-city - specifically Big Apple - noir, like several others from the bumper crop of 1950, like Side Street and Sleeping City and The Tattooed Stranger and Edge of Doom.

As the movie opens, police detective Dana Andrews is on the carpet for his brutal ways, particularly his vendetta towards crime boss Gary Merrill (whom we learn was set up in business by Andrews' ne'er-do-well father). When an out-of-towner is stabbed to death at a floating crap game operated by Merrill, the hair-trigger Andrews roughs up a witness, causing him a fatal crack to the skull (exacerbated by a steel plate installed in the veteran's head). Realizing that his job's already on the line, Andrews dumps the body in the river after making it look like the suspect had taken a powder.

Of course, that's far from an end to it. The corpse is discovered, his estranged wife turns out to be Tierney, and all the evidence starts to turn toward her father (Tom Tully), a hack driver who happened not only to have been cruising the same mean streets the night of the murder but to have ample reason to want his abusive son-in-law dead. But the embittered loner Andrews finds in Tierney a summons to his better nature; he tries to exonerate her father while still keeping his own involvement in the whole sordid business a secret....

Not so epigrammatic as Laura, the script for Where The Sidewalk Ends (by Ben Hecht) shows a pungency of its own (in a second dressing-down, his superior tells Andrews, `Look at you - all bunged up like a barrelhouse fag').

But while Laura spread its attention over half a dozen characters, here Andrews is all but the sole focus (even Tierney's role is far less central than her half-spectral Laura). And Andrews may never have excelled his performance here. It's tight-lipped and taciturn, but never more eloquent than when his face is silently registering the anguish to which his own obstinacy has brought him. He's a pent-up sufferer who can find release only through the safety-valve of violence (he even lashes out against his loyal partner, Bert Freed). To be sure, he finds too swift a road to redemption though the agency of his beautiful co-star. But that was the style of the times, and a sweetened-up ending does little to undermine this New York story of violence, corruption and urban entanglements.

Reviewed by David Cavallo ([email protected]) 8 / 10

First rate film noir; make that a superb movie.

Elegance and class are not always the first words that come to mind when folks (at least folks who might do such a thing) sit around and talk about film noir.

Yet some of the best films of the genre, "Out of the Past," "The Killers," "In A Lonely Place," "Night and the City," manage a level of sleek sophistication that elevates them beyond a moody catch phrase and its connotations of foreboding shadows, fedoras, and femme-fatales.

"Where the Sidewalk Ends," a fairly difficult to find film -- the only copy in perhaps the best stocked video store in Manhattan was a rough bootleg from the AMC cable channel -- belongs in a category with these classics.

From the moment the black cloud of opening credits pass, a curtain is drawing around rogue loner detective Marc Dixon's crumbling world, and as the moments pass, it inches ever closer, threatening suffocation.

Sure, he's that familiar "cop with a dark past", but Dana Andrews gives Dixon a bleak stare and troubled intensity that makes you as uncomfortable as he seems. And yeah, he's been smacking around suspects for too long, and the newly promoted chief (Karl Malden, in a typically robust and commanding outing) is warning him "for the last time."

Yet Dixon hates these thugs too much to stop now. And boy didn't they had have it coming?

"Hoods, dusters, mugs, gutter nickel-rats" he spits when that tough nut of a boss demotes him and rolls out all of the complaints the bureau has been receiving about Dixon's right hook. The advice is for him to cool off for his own good. But instead he takes matters into his own hands.

And what a world of trouble he finds when he relies on his instincts, and falls back on a nature that may or may not have been passed down from a generation before.

Right away he's in deep with the cops, the syndicate, his own partner. Dixon's questionable involvement in a murder "investigation" threatens his job, makes him wonder whether he is simply as base as those he has sworn to bring in. Like Bogart in "Lonely Place," can he "escape what he is?"

When he has nowhere else to turn, he discovers that he has virtually doomed his unexpected relationship with a seraphic beauty (the marvelous Gene Tierney) who seems as if she can turn his barren bachelor's existence into something worth coming home to.

The pacing of this superb film is taut and gripping. The group of writers that contributed to the production polished the script to a high gloss -- the dialogue is snappy without disintegrating into dated parody fodder, passionate without becoming melodramatic or sappy.

And all of this top-notch direction and acting isn't too slick or buffed to loosen the film's emotional hold. Gene Tierney's angelic, soft-focus beauty is used to great effect. She shows herself to be an actress of considerable range, and her gentle, kind nature is as boundless here as is her psychosis in "Leave Her to Heaven." The scenes between Tierney and Andrews's Dixon grow more intense and touching the closer he seems to self-destruction.

Near the end of his rope, cut, bruised, and exhausted Dixon summarizes his lot: "Innocent people can get into terrible jams, too,.." he says. "One false move and you're in over your head."

Perhaps what makes this film so totally compelling is the sense that things could go wildly wrong for almost anyone -- especially for someone who is trying so hard to do right -- with one slight shift in the wind, one wrong decision or punch, or, most frighteningly, due to factors you have no control over. Noir has always reflected the darkest fears, brought them to the surface. "Where the Sidewalk Ends" does so in a realistic fashion.

(One nit-pick of an aside: This otherwise sterling film has a glaringly poor dub of a blonde model that wouldn't seem out of place on Mystery Science Theater. How very odd.)

But Noir fans -- heck, ANY movie fans -- who haven't seen this one are in for a terrific treat.

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