Blast of Silence (1961)
Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 13
Fresh: 11 | Rotten: 2
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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 3
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 0
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 758
A few days in the life of a murderer go under the microscope in this offbeat and intense low-budget film noir, the first feature from director Allen Baron. Frankie Bono (Baron) is a hired killer from Cleveland who travels to New York City a few days before Christmas on an assignment. Bono, a bitter loner who has few friends and little use for relationships with others, has been brought to the Big Apple to rub out Troiano (Peter Clume), a second-rate mobster. After a less than pleasant encounter
Apr 1, 1961 Wide
Apr 15, 2008
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Bill de Prato
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This compact and forceful low-budget film noir ... compresses a week in a hit man's bitter life into a dazzlingly brisk yet richly nuanced seventy-seven minutes.
With its finger-popping jazz score and beat-inspired interior monologue (in second person, no less), this might seem comical if it weren't so rooted in existential dread.
You'd have to wait until The Killing of a Chinese Bookie for a deeper autopsy of the gangland macho ethos
The lost noir classic starts off a bit dubiously... but the increasingly sleazy, realistic atmosphere begins to take hold of you, until you're fairly well rapt.
For a no-budget film shot on location in New York City on the sly with a nonactor in the lead role, there is a grand, existential audacity to Allen Baron's Blast of Silence.
Absolutely eye-popping film noir about an alienated hit-man. Not without a certain musty charm, especially the scene at the Village Gate where a "beatnik" jazz musician sings "Dressed in Black".
The tension doesn't so much revolve around the antihero's job, redemption, or ultimate fate but rather the disconnect between its mundane milieu and the grandiose flourishes they're meant to convey.
There's lots to recommend this shoestring picture, not the least of which is Baron's acting ability.
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