Hemingway’s terse, tense dialogue marks the unnerving opening sequence that introduces Burt Lancaster - in his film debut - as doomed protagonist ‘The Swede’, a star-crossed boxer hunted by hired guns after he becomes infatuated with fickle femme fatale and gansters’ moll Ava Gardner. Master Director Robert Siodmak’s (The Suspect) stylish, film noir masterpiece earned four Oscar® nominations.
This gritty saga of murder, money and betrayal was helmed by legendary director Don Siegel (Invasion of the Bodysnatchers, Dirty Harry) and features a stunning performance by Lee Marvin as a hitman looking for a quick retirement. John Cassavetes (the later cult director) stars as a race driver who falls into a dangerous liaison with the beautiful Angie Dickinson. Ronald Reagan, in his last and best acting performance, shines as Johnny’s nemesis.
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