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Cornered [Region 2]

Dick Powell , Walter Slezak , Edward Dmytryk  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Region 2 encoding (This DVD will not play on most DVD players sold in the US or Canada [Region 1]. This item requires a region specific or multi-region DVD player and compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Dick Powell, Walter Slezak, Micheline Cheirel, Nina Vale, Morris Carnovsky
  • Directors: Edward Dmytryk
  • Format: Import, PAL
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Region: Region 2 (Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Run Time: 102.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0013JE5GW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #702,709 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Spain released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: it WILL NOT play on standard US DVD player. You need multi-region PAL/NTSC DVD player to view it in USA/Canada: LANGUAGES: English ( Mono ), Spanish ( Mono ), Spanish ( Subtitles ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Black & White, Filmographies, Interactive Menu, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: On being demobbed at the end of the war, Canadian flyer Laurence Gerard returns to France to discover who ordered the killing of a group of Resistence fighters including his new bride. He identifies Vichy collaborator Marcel Jarnac, who is reported as dead himself. Not believing this, Gerard follows the trail to Argentina where it is apparent that Nazism is also far from dead. ...Cornered

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
Heartily recommended. From the very first scenes of Cornered, you know Dick Powell means business. He grinds his teeth as he collects his pay for military service in WW2, then is told he must wait to get a passport to re-enter France. Cut to Powell in a boat off the French shore. He stands, wraps a Luger in plastic, shoves it into his coat, then sinks his boat and swims to land.
Why? We come to find out that his French war bride of 20 days was killed by a Vichy officer, who since died himself. But Powell ain't buying it, and follows his cold trail all the way to Buenos Aires, where exists a dangerous underground full of Nazis and collaborators scheming to rise again.
This film is rather unusual in that it makes the point Powell doesn't really have all the answers. He knows he may be going about things wrong, but he doesn't much care. He's not smug like Cagney, not smart like Bogart, and he has no legal authority. All he has is his instinctive, righteous anger. Hence the title: he fights like a wounded, cornered animal.
Many of the filmmakers, including director Dmytryk, were blacklisted later on, and there is indeed a definite tinge of, shall we say, pink, to the proceedings. And the subtle, flawed argument put forth blames a percieved moral laziness in capitalism as much as it blames fascists for fascism's rise. But ignore all that rot; the diatribes and revelations come mostly in a talky finale where the killer is revealed before Powell finally gets his chance to knock the schweinhundt on his axis. The majority of the film traces Powell all over an exotic city in an uncertain time.
Well-acted, well-scripted and well-directed, maybe 10 minutes overlong, the film manges never to lag, even in the static scenes.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
Hot on the heels of his success in Murder, My Sweet comes Dick Powell in Cornered. Again a tough guy, Laurence Gerard (Powell) is in search of his wife's killer, a man named Marcel Jarnac. The problem is, Jarnac is dead, or so everyone says. Gerard knows better, and his thirst for revenge is so great, he is willing to put himself into the path of danger to achieve it. He persues Jarnac's wife (Micheline Cheirel) and with the help of a shady tour guide (Walter Slezak) does his best to kill Jarnac before Jarnac kills him.

Thankfully, the actor playing Jarnac is not credited until the end of the film. This way the viewer does not guess and is kept in suspense. Cornered is rather suspenseful in some places, especially in those that most resemble typical film noir. The scene in the subway between Mrs. Jarnac and Gerald is brilliantly paced with the passing of trains; each pause in conversation makes one more anxious to hear what is to be said. The final scene in the dark hideout is intense as one might expect it to be, but the use of lighting (or lack thereof) is used to full effect.

Cornered is also notable for the casting of Powell. Although he had success once before in a noir drama, this type of role was still pretty foreign to him, but he handles it expertly. He looks completely different than he did in his crooning days complete with buzzcut, deep wrinkles, and a concerned expression. This film also shows a side of Powell that one might not expect; he has a crying scene. It is brief, but heartfelt and adds another level to his performance.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Great "Unknown" Film Noir November 8, 2009
CORNERED(1945)---(directed by Edward Dmytryk)---Dick Powell, Walter Slezak, Micheline Cheirel, Nina Vale, Morris Carnovsky, Luther Adler.
I was not aware of this film noir until I ran across a description of it on the Free Movies On DVD site. It proved to be an enjoyable surprise. It was made a year after Powell's image-changing role as hard-boiled private eye Philip Marlowe in, MURDER, MY SWEET(also directed by Dmytryk). Powell plays a very "Marlowe-like" individual in this movie---indeed, his character is even more "hard-boiled" in this film---and it is full of the crackling dialogue that is one of the hallmarks of noir. The film opens with Powell's character being de-mobilized from the RCAF at the end of WWII. We soon learn that his French wife was among a group of Resistance fighters who were shot by the Germans. Powell is obsessed with finding, and killing, the man responsible for ordering the shootings. His search takes him from Paris to Marseilles to Buenos Aires. Upon arriving in Argentina, Powell is approached by one Melchior Incza(Slezak), a decidedly shady-looking character who seems to know a great deal about Powell and his mission. He offers to help Powell accomplish his objective and the film takes off from there. The plot becomes intricate, as befits a noir, and is full of "twists and turns"---no one, it seems, is to be trusted. The climax of the film is quintessentially "noirish" and quite effective. Although the plot is complicated, one never has a sense of being as "hopelessly lost" as is the case with some other, more well-known noirs, e.g., MURDER, MY SWEET; THE BIG SLEEP; etc. The cast is uniformly good in their various roles, with Powell and Slezak turning in two of the best performances of their respective careers---IMO.
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