Where the Sidewalk Ends

Where the Sidewalk Ends

Director: Otto Preminger

Cast: Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, Gary Merrill

     
 

Dana Andrews is brutal metropolitan police detective Dixon, who despises all criminals because his father had been one. When the cops pick up two-bit gambler Ken Paine (Craig Stevens) as a murder suspect, Dixon subjects Paine to the third degree -- and accidentally kills him. In disposing of the body, Dixon inadvertently places the blame for the killing on cab driver… See more details below

Overview

Dana Andrews is brutal metropolitan police detective Dixon, who despises all criminals because his father had been one. When the cops pick up two-bit gambler Ken Paine (Craig Stevens) as a murder suspect, Dixon subjects Paine to the third degree -- and accidentally kills him. In disposing of the body, Dixon inadvertently places the blame for the killing on cab driver Jiggs Taylor (Tom Tully). Having fallen in love with Jigg's daughter, Morgan (Gene Tierney), Dixon tries to clear the cabbie without implicating himself, but ultimately he becomes trapped in a web of his own making; luckily Morgan promises to stand by him. Where the Sidewalk Ends was adapted from a novel by William L. Stuart; its director was Otto Preminger, who'd previously put Andrews and Tierney through their paces in Laura (1944).

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Where the Sidewalk Ends, while hardly obscure, is also not as well known as it deserves to be. This film noir entry is decidedly flawed, which keeps it from being of the absolute top rank, but it's awfully good -- especially for aficionados of crime thrillers. Sidewalk's main flaw is that the setup of its basic story doesn't quite seem believable; it seems a stretch that Dixon would go to such extraordinary lengths to cover up the murder he accidentally commits. Certainly, there are people who would do this, but it doesn't quite ring true with what we know of the character. Worse, it's incredible that Jiggs would be charged with the murder; there's no blood in his taxi, yet the murdered man would surely have left traces there if the deed had been done in the manner the police suggest. However, if one can accept some of the stretches of the plot, Sidewalk is a taut, totally gripping yarn that also manages to do some good old existential exploration of the good and bad that coexist in all of us. (Not that all of the characters are good and bad in Sidewalk -- but the mixture in our leading man is more than enough to prove screenwriter Ben Hecht's point.) Hecht has also provided some great dialogue and some juicy roles for his actors -- the exception being Gene Tierney's character, which is surprisingly bland. Fortunately, Tierney's stellar looks make the character's dullness secondary. As Dixon, Dana Andrews turns in one of his finest performances. Andrews' range of characters was fairly limited, but he proved here and in several other entries that he was a perfect noir hero -- conflicted, tortured, and torn, but always with a veneer of toughness. The rest of the cast is also strong, with even Gary Merrill turning in a praiseworthy performance. Otto Preminger's direction is excellent, full of his gliding, inquisitive camera that won't leave the characters alone and with an expert sense of pacing that keeps the film buzzing along at a nice, tense pace. Brutish and brooding, Sidewalk is a small gem.

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Product Details

Release Date:
12/06/2005
UPC:
0024543215608
Original Release:
1950
Rating:
NR
Source:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Full Frame]
Time:
1:34:00
Sales rank:
14,067

Special Features

Closed Caption; Commentary by film noir historian Eddie Muller; Still photo gallery; Theatrical trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Dana Andrews Mark Dixon
Gene Tierney Morgan Taylor
Gary Merrill Tommy Scalise
Bert Freed Paul Klein
Karl Malden Lt. Bill Thomas
Tom Tully Jiggs Taylor
Ruth Donnelly Martha
Craig Stevens Ken Paine
Robert Simon Inspector Nicholas Foley
Robert Simon Inspector Nicholas Foley
Harry Von Zell Ted Morrison
Don Appell Willie Bender
Neville Brand Steve
Grace Mills Mrs. Tribaum
Lou Krugman Mike Williams
David McMahon Harrington
David Wolfe Sid Kramer
Steve Roberts Gilruth
Phil Tully Ted Benson
Ian MacDonald Casey
John Close Hanson
John McGuire Gertessen
Lou Nova Ernie
Oleg Cassini Mayer
Louise Lorimer Mrs. Jackson
Lester Sharpe Friedman
Chili Williams Teddy
Robert Foulk Fenney
Mack Williams Jerry Morris
Duke Watson Cab Driver
Clancy Cooper Lt. Arnaldo
Joseph Granby Fat Man
Charles Flynn Schwartz
Larry Thompson Riley
Tony Barr Hoodlum
John Day Actor
Bob Evans Sweatshirt
Fred Graham Attendant
Louis Lane Actor
Herbert Lytton Joe
Lee MacGregor Man
John Marshall Actor
Eda Reiss Merin Shirley Klein
Robert Patten Medical Examiner
Ralph Peters Counterman
Clarence Straight Detective
John Trebach Bartender
Shirley Tegge Actor
Barry Brooks Thug
Anthony George Thug
Kathleen Hughes Secretary
Peggy O'Connor Model

Technical Credits
Otto Preminger Director,Producer
Ben Hecht Screenwriter
Alfred Bruzlin Sound/Sound Designer
Oleg Cassini Costumes/Costume Designer
Robert Kent Screenwriter
Joseph La Shelle Cinematographer
Charles LeMaire Costumes/Costume Designer
Harry M. Leonard Sound/Sound Designer
Thomas K. Little Set Decoration/Design
Louis Loeffler Editor
Cyril Mockridge Score Composer
Lionel Newman Musical Direction/Supervision
Ben Nye Makeup
Frank P. Rosenberg Associate Producer,Screenwriter
Walter Scott Set Decoration/Design
Fred Sersen Special Effects
Russell J. Spencer Art Director
Victor Trivas Screenwriter
Lyle Wheeler Art Director

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Where the Sidewalk Ends
1. Main Titles/Complaints [4:30]
2. Lady Luck [4:13]
3. DOA [4:09]
4. Self-Defense [2:18]
5. Witness [2:56]
6. Almost Caught [5:19]
7. Unable to Sleep [3:39]
8. High Fashion [3:03]
9. Old Times [:27]
10. Martha's Café [5:33]
11. Fancy Footwork [3:50]
12. About-Face [3:00]
13. Too Much Heat [1:50]
14. A Terrible Jam [6:05]
15. Take a Vacation [3:47]
16. The Wrong Guy [3:46]
17. Parole Violation [1:19]
18. Shaking Loose [:05]
19. Out of His Head [6:10]
20. So Long [5:06]

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