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A businessman who has been given a lethal dose of radium by a hired assassin tracks down his killer in a chase through the streets of Los Angeles.
A faceless figure marches down an endless hallway as dark, driving music underscores his doom. It's stocky, stalwart Edmond O'Brien, who plows through the police detective's office like he's got nothing to lose. "I want to report a murder," he demands, grim and sleepy-eyed. Who was killed? "I was." It's a brilliant opening to a memorable film noir classic. O'Brien is a CPA who flees his dull job and small California town for a wild weekend in San Francisco, only to be poisoned and doomed to certain death. With only days to live, his incredulity morphs into a searing drive to find his killers and stinging regrets for what might have been. O'Brien is a familiar noir face, but he usually plays figures of authority: a cop in White Heat; an investigator in The Killers. He's a little stiff here, but his blunt, unglamorous persona is perfect for the Everyman who is randomly visited by death. Rudolph Maté, a cinematographer turned director, moves from sun-bright day scenes to busy nighttime locations with few visual flourishes, but when he takes the camera into the streets of Los Angeles and San Francisco the film is energized with a gritty, restless vigor. It's one of the most relentlessly dark films noir ever made--taut, edgy, and low budget. Watch for the Bradbury building in the film's climax, made famous by its memorable use decades later in the sci-fi noir classic Blade Runner. --Sean Axmaker
Frank Bigelow (Edmond O'Brien, you may remember him as Winston Smith in `1984' 1956) realizes after he had a one night fling that he does not feel so good. Read morePublished on Nov. 25 2013 by B. Chandler
I'd love to give this wonderful film full marks(as it deserves),but this DVD release comes up a bit short on the technical and the extras side,as you will see.
D.O.A. Read more
As Socrates once said "I drank what?"
Frank Bigelow (Edmond O'Brien, you may remember him as Winston Smith in `1984' 1956) realizes after he had a one night fling that... Read more
The concept of a murder victim who functions as his own detective, gives to D.O.A. a unique point of view and also gives it a major status.
The inspiration for D.O.A. Read more
This movie is a clear demonstration of how it's possible to make excellent cinema based on premises frontally opposite to the movies of today. Read morePublished on Jan. 12 2004 by Carlos Vazquez Quintana
The reviews earlier than this one (shown below this review) reveal too much of the plot of D.O.A. See the movie first then read the remaining reviews. Read morePublished on May 8 2002
D.O.A. is quintessential 1950's film noir (though it was shot in 1949) and in my opinion the best of the genre. Read morePublished on Aug. 27 2001 by Rix Roundtree-Harrison
A classic example of 'Film Noir'; a movie where a poisoned man searches for his killer. Contains the immortal line, "I'm sorry Mister Bigelow -- but you've been... Read morePublished on Jan. 7 2000 by FilmFool