The Asphalt Jungle (1950)
Average Rating: 8.4/10
Reviews Counted: 25
Fresh: 24 | Rotten: 1
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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 6,675
The Asphalt Jungle is a brilliantly conceived and executed anatomy of a crime -- or, as director John Huston and scripter Ben Maddow put it, "a left-handed form of human endeavor." Recently paroled master criminal Erwin "Doc" Riedenschneider (Sam Jaffe), with funding from crooked attorney Emmerich (Louis Calhern), gathers several crooks together in Cincinnati for a Big Caper. Among those involved are Dix (Sterling Hayden), an impoverished hood who sees the upcoming jewel heist as a means to
May 23, 1950 Wide
Jul 6, 2004
WARNER BROTHERS PICTURES
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Alonzo D. Emmerich
Doc Erwin Riedenschn...
Police Commissioner ...
Marc Lawrence I
William "Wee Willie"...
Sol (Saul) Gorss
Karl Anton Smith
Tom Browne Henry
James X. Connery
Jack; Police Clerk
Joseph Darr Smith
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One of the first films to depict crime from the POV of the deviants rather than the police, this seminal film (arguably Huston's best) had a huge influence on the genre, manifest in the early work of Kubrick--and decades later Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs
This tale of a jewel theft gone wrong is notable for its gritty procedural detail and an emphasis on the inner lives of the small time crooks, expertly played by Sterling Hayden and Sam Jaffe.
One of The Asphalt Jungle's strengths is that the crims seem about as thick as you suspect they would be in real life: no Cruise or Clooney-style braniac super-athletes here.
Rogue's Gallery noir classic.
High-end noir in a low-end world.
Huston concentrates mostly on the film's performances, but like The Maltese Falcon and The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, he uses space, shadow and a very clever mise-en-scene to physically illustrate the film's themes.
Among John Huston's most overrated works, only partially redeemed by Jaffe's brilliance and Marilyn's cameo.
They don't get more noir than this.
Huston as director is in his prime, utilising the script and the acting talent to their fullest.
Audience Reviews for The Asphalt Jungle
- Alonzo D. Emmerich: After all crime is just the left handed form of human endeavor.
- Doc Erwin Riedenschneider: One way or another, we all work for our vice.
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