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Information

Year
1948
Runtime
95 min.
Director
Nicholas Ray
Genres
Crime, Romance, Film-Noir
Rating *
7.6
Votes *
2,718
Checks
1,851
Favs
152
Dislikes
6
Favs/checks
8.2% (1:12)
Favs/dislikes
25:1
* View IMDb information

Top comments

  1. Siskoid's avatar

    Siskoid

    Before he made Rebel Without a Cause, Nicholas Ray plunged head-first into the disaffected youth genre with his freshman effort, They Live by Night, the story of really naive teens who run off together, he (Farley Granger) just broken out of prison by a gang of toughs and on the run for crimes he took part in, she (Cathy O'Donnell) a bored girl next door who falls in like with him. They don't really know anything, including the fact they have no hope of settling down. It's quite edgy and forward-thinking at times, with helicopter shots lending some frantic energy to the escape scenes and the inferred sex and violence. And bold in that it never shows you any of the crimes, always cutting to the aftermath and to the film's real focus - the relationship. At the same time, I found it unbearably old-fashioned and syrupy at times, the Hollywood score in particular, and the mannered line delivery in those breathless romantic scenes. It's like Ray was reaching for a more realistic piece of cinema, but couldn't see his way out of an older, more theatrical way of doing things. And I hate every character's name/nickname with a passion I didn't know I had inside myself. 2 months 4 weeks ago
  2. zkrat's avatar

    zkrat

    Textbook Noir. Great stuff by Nick Ray, a lot of "new" camera angles were used. (Helicopter, back of the car)

    Recommended.
    6 years 11 months ago
  3. anne_f_'s avatar
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In 12 official lists

  1. This movie ranks #34 in 101 Gangster Movies You Must See Before You Die
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    101 Gangster Movies You …

    34
  2. This movie ranks #56 in TSPDT's 1,000 Noir Films
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    TSPDT's 1,000 Noir Films

    56
  3. This movie ranks #56 in TSPDT's 100 Essential Noir Films
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    TSPDT's 100 Essential No…

    56
  4. This movie ranks #73 in Quentin Tarantino's Coolest Movies of All Time
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    Quentin Tarantino's Cool…

    73
  5. This movie ranks #282 in Jonathan Rosenbaum's Essential Cinema
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    Jonathan Rosenbaum's Ess…

    282
  6. This movie ranks #397 in David Thomson's Have You Seen?
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    David Thomson's Have You…

    397
  7. This movie ranks #433 in Sight & Sound's The Greatest Films of All Time
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    Sight & Sound's The Grea…

    433
  8. This movie ranks #669 in TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest Films
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    TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest F…

    669
  9. This movie ranks #871 in The New York Times's Book of Movies
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    The New York Times's Boo…

    871
  10. This movie ranks #887 in The Guardian's 1000 Films to See Before You Die
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    The Guardian's 1000 Film…

    887
  11. This movie ranks #915 in Time Out's 1000 Films to Change Your Life
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    Time Out's 1000 Films to…

    915
  12. This movie ranks #1023 in The Criterion Collection
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    The Criterion Collection

    1023
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