Deadline at Dawn Reviews
March 20, 2011
This film I found as part of the Film Noir Collection Volume 5 which can be found on Amazon. I was blown away by not only the storyline but also the acting. Paul Lukas stole the stage when he appeared in this movie. Bill Williams plays the I'm from the country and don't know squat about life Sailor, who wakes up in a newsstand after a all night drunk with 1400 dollars in his pocket, he goes to return to the girl he took it from to find her dead. He meets a B Girl (Susan Hayward)m who gets tangled up in his story, they try to find the killer, as they do more and more people are weaved into this story. The ending will blow you away, as it did me. I will not give it away here. This is the most enjoyable film, worth every minute of your time, It comes as a Double with Backfire another go film. Can believe I'm giving a old B&W Film 5 Stars.
November 10, 2008
Terrifically gritty noir. Susan, still a B actress at the time took a big step forward with this little gem, one of the great overlooked noirs. She's tough and no nonsense but caring. She also looks phenomenal considering she had given birth to twin boys just before making this. Bill Williams is just right as the naive gob and Paul Lukas adds great support as a cabbie who lends a helping hand. The film is also full of wonderful touches, Susan's snappy no-nonsense talk, the incidental characters the leads come across and the sets and set-ups of the shots with intriguing little details just randomly placed in the background. Well worth seeking out.
December 12, 2013
This was something I discovered via a recent TCM Film Noir spotlight, and while there's a few convenient plot twists, it's still a helluva lot of fun and worth a watch.
August 11, 2013
A sailor on leave wakes up to find the woman he met is dead and can't remember what if anything he had to do with it. He's got to catch a bus at dawn or be declared AWOL (hence, the title of the film), and is afraid he will be implicated in the murder if he doesn't find the true killer before then. He teams up with a dance hall hostess played by Susan Hayward and, a philosophical cab driver played by Paul Lukas and sets out into the New York midnight to solve the mystery.
Standard film noir. Bill Williams' act as a na´ve goofball was an unflattering portrayal of a U.S. sailor at the end of WWII although Hayward and Lukas excelled in their roles and saved the movie.
October 14, 2012
I really enjoyed this film noir saga. I doubt today's movie producers could remake this film successfully. Acted well, by all. Good work RKO.