A Great Crime-Heist movie i had never heard about and i was pleasantly
surprised watching it. Maybe not really a Film Noir perhaps?
KTG is more regular entertainment than Desperation, Darkness and Angst
and James Cagney is magnificent in his uniquely over the
top way of acting as the psychopathic robber and killer Ralph Cotter.
James "White Heat" Cagney owns this film with his relaxed
ironical style .... could that be Over the Top at the same time? Yes,
Cagney managed that.
This film must be a forgotten gem where James Cagney
is a Big A and the rest is purely B, with Barbara Payton being B in
the right Cult
movie way. Helena Carter is good-bad also as a cretinous rich girl without
any morals whatsoever.
The film is based on Horace McCloy's 1948 pulp fiction
novel (same name) and McCloy was a writer that debuted with a big Bang
with the hailed novel They Shoot Horses, Don't They?
which has become something of an American Classic. It's a heart-wrenching
depressing, dark, poetic and filled with empathy. A heart-wrenching
watch too as it was filmed very successfully in 1969 by Sydney
Pollack and with Jane Fonda in, my view, her BEST role ever. About the
humiliating marathon dances during the Depression
US Pocket book 1948 edition of the 1935 novel
The main guy in the novel is a highly intelligent but
nihilistic übermench with brutal views about women and humanity.
psychopath and this study in Psychopathy preceds the writings of Jim
Thompson, another master of the crime genre.
In the film Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye James Cagney's role figure's mental
sickness is a bit downplayed due to his charisma.
The film starts with a Flashback to a court-room where
a prosecutor agitates the Jury with panegyrical depictions of the evil
the accused has committed, and then we're on a Prison Farm where we
get to meet Ralph Cotter (James Cagney) and his prisoner
buddy Carlton. Cotter escapes in a break-out that has been planned by
Carlton's sister Holiday (Barbara Payton) but his fellow
escapee Carlton and some guards dies as a result. After having been
beatened up by Cotter she becames his gangster bitch,
and no reason to get upset as everyone in this film are despicable,
rotten to the bone, male as female.
So, on the outside of prison again Cotter initiates
a Crime Wave and he encounters i.a. the corrupt crime cops Webber and
the mobster lawyer Cherokee and the amoral and stupid Rich Girl Margaret
Dobson (Helena Carter). This film was entertaining
and is presented in 4:3 fullscreen original ratio, black & white,
english mono audio. No extras