Thursday, December 24, 2009


I have really enjoyed the Humphrey Bogart birthday tribute this month. I saw several "New to me movies". One movie that I really enjoyed was KNOCK ON ANY DOOR (1949)..Wonderful to see Humphrey Bogart play a lawyer instead of a guy who needs one.:)

It is a crime/ noir /drama directed by Nicholas Ray. Cast: Humphrey Bogart and John Derek the film and was based on the novel of the same name by Willard Motley.
The story begins, When handsome Nick Romano is arrested for the murder of a policeman during a robbery, he asks lawyer Andrew Morton ,(who also grew up in the slums), to help defend him. Andy agrees under protest to take his case after Nick says that he is innocent and, even though a bartender was an eye witness. Nick's friends, confirm his alibi.

In Andy's opening speech at the trial, he shares with the jury, Nick's background. Andy first met Nick six years ago after his father went to jail for killing someone in self-defense. Unfortunately, Nick's father dies in jail of a heart attack before his case goes trial.. Now the family hits hard times and have to move into a bad neighborhood. Nick gets involved with some of the other boys and is arrested for stealing a car and is sentenced to a reform school, where his friend dies of pneumonia after being punished.

Back on the streets, Nick falls in love with Emma, a poor but good girl who lives with her alcoholic aunt.

Nick is arrested again, and social worker Adele Patterson comes to Andy for help . Andy comes to see Nick, but Nick, has a chip on his shoulder. He steals money from Andy which angers him.

Nick and Emma soon marry, Andy helps him find a job, Nick's quick temper and unfortunate background cause him to be fired from one job after another. After he lost his paycheck gambling, hoping to buy his wife some jewelry, Emma tells him that she is pregnant. Nick is drunk and angry, demands that she give the baby away. He tells her,"live fast, die young and have a good-looking corpse."

Will Nick ever be able to change his life around?
Click to view movie clips.

Fun Facts:
This was the first film made by Humphrey Bogart's independent production company, Santana. He chose Nicholas Ray to direct because he admired his work in the film They Live by Night (1948).

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