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Raw Deal


Dir. Anthony Mann. 1948, 79 mins. 35mm archival print from the Library of Congress. With Dennis O’Keefe, Claire Trevor, Marsha Hunt, Raymond Burr. A woman helps spring her boyfriend from the state prison so they can flee to South America, but he insists on first collecting the $50,000 owed to him from a ruthless double-crosser played by Raymond Burr. This brutally poetic Mann thriller barely made it past the Hollywood censors who objected to, among other things, an innocent hostage falling in love with her kidnapper. Between its existential musings, haunting theremin theme, and John Alton’s striking cinematography, Raw Deal is a fiercely beautiful cry of film noir despair.

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