Saturday, March 13, 2010

'The Hoodlum' gets what he deserves

The Hoodlum (1951)
Starring: Lawrence Tierney, Edward Tierney, Marjorie Riordan, Allene Roberts, Lisa Golm and Stuard Randall
Director: Max Nosseck
Rating: Five of Ten Stars

After gaining an early parole from prison, career criminal Vincent Lubeck (Tierney) goes to work for his brother's gas station. But instead of reforming, he returns to his life of crime in ways even worse than before... starting with the rape of his brother's girlfriend and culminating in an armored car heist.

"The Hoodlum" is a fairly decent "crime doesn't pay" movie where the utterly contemptable main character gets exactly what's coming to him by the end. It also features a nicely staged heist bit with a tense get-away sequence.

Unfortunately, the fimmakers blow the ending by slathering on an excessive amount of melodrama and by offering up a deus ex machina development to keep the Good Brother from making a life-altering choice. By shying away from the ending they were on track for, the writers passed up a perfect opportunity to make up for the gooey melodrama and to lift this movie to a higher level than run-of-the-mill.

1 comment:

  1. I know of a few politicians who should see this one.