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Odd Man Out [Import]
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Hailed for its sensitive treatment of a difficult subject, "Odd Man Out" is a tale of ordinary people trapped in the web of Northern Ireland's troubles. Irish rebel Johnny McQueen (James Mason), maimed and bleeding, weaves an escape route through Belfast's seedy underground while each of his comrades falls prey to bounty hunters and police in director Carol Reed's (The Third Man) classic film noir.
Film noir is a term usually associated with American films of the 1940s and 1950s, but this British classic from 1947 fits the definition in almost every respect. It's one of the milestone films of its era, highlighted by what is arguably the best performance in the illustrious career of James Mason, here playing the leader of an underground Irish rebel organization who is seriously wounded when a payroll heist goes sour. Left for dead by his accomplices on the streets of Belfast, he's forced to hide wherever he can find shelter and refuge, and as his gunshot wound gradually drains his life away, his lover (Kathleen Ryan) struggles to locate him before it's too late. Although the IRA and Belfast are never mentioned by name, this film was a daring and morally complex examination of Northern Ireland's "troubles," and its compelling tragedy hasn't lost any of its impact. A study of conscience in crisis and the bitter aftermath of terrorism, this was one of the first films to address IRA activities on intimately human terms. Political potency is there for those who seek it, but the film is equally invigorating as a riveting story of a tragic figure on the run from the law, forced to confront the wrath of his own beliefs in the last hours of his life. It was this brilliant, unforgettable film that established the directorial prowess of Carol Reed, whose next two films (The Fallen Idol and The Third Man) were equally extraordinary. --Jeff Shannon
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Top Customer Reviews
The strange characters he encounters, and the hallucinations he experiences turn this into something resembling a horror film, while the story has many points in common with Kafka's "The Trial".
Although the suspense never lets up for an instant, the real theme of the film is alienation and the state of grace, and there are some moving scenes where the wounded fugitive looks from a snowy alley into a bedroom with happy children playing or a phone booth with two housewives gossipping to each other as they share the phone. There are even biblical quotations to drive home the metaphysical theme.
People who know Carol Reed's films swear that this is the best; and all lovers of film noir are missing out if they haven't seen Odd Man Out, because it is probably the best one ever made. The camera work in the dim alleys is sufficient to classify this as an art film, although it was widely popular when it first came out.
Taking place largely over the course of one tense night, Carol Reed’s psychological noir, set in an unnamed Belfast, stars James Mason as a revolutionary ex-con leading a robbery that goes horribly wrong. Injured and hunted by the police, he seeks refuge throughout the city, while the woman he loves Kathleen Sullivan [Kathleen Ryan] searches for him among the shadows. Carol Reed and cinematographer Robert Krasker (who would collaborate again on ‘The Third Man’) create images of stunning depth for this fierce, spiritual depiction of a man’s ultimate confrontation with himself.
FILM FACT: The film's violent ending attracted advance criticism from the censors, and had to be toned down in the finished film. The film received the BAFTA Award for Best British Film in 1948. It was nominated for the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival in 1947, and nominated for a Best Film Editing Oscar in 1948. Filmmaker Roman Polanski has repeatedly cited ‘Odd Man Out’ as his favourite film. Roman Polanski feels that Odd Man Out is superior to ‘The Third Man,’ generally considered to be Carol Reed's masterpiece.
Cast: James Mason, Kathleen Sullivan, Robert Newton, Robert Beatty, Cyril Cusack, Roy Irving, Dan O'Herlihy, Kitty Kirwin, Maureen Delany, Dennis O'Dea, Fay Compton, Beryl Measor, Arthur Hambling, William Hartnell, F. J. McCormick, Elwin Brook-Jones, W. C. Fay, Joseph Tomelty, Wilfrid Brambell (uncredited), Dora Bryan (uncredited), Madam Kirkwood-Hackett (uncredited) and Pat McGrath (uncredited)
Director: Carol Reed
Producer: Carol Reed
Screenplay: R.C. Sherriff and F.L.Read more ›
What Reed depicts in this film is to ,ake a sociological surgeon about Ulster comunnity and through the dramatical fact of our wounded man, played superbly by James Mason, the script is consistent without melodramatic holes, so you gradually feel the tension and the predictable climax . But the storytelling is incredible, the scene in the bar and the effect of the beer's drop still remains in my mind. You may consider it like the most important political film made in U.K. till that moment.
Don't miss under any pretext watching this movie. It will surpass all your expectations.
this film is a staple in his marvellous career and the film itself has an intensity that matches the acting of mason and reed's direction took full advantage of the powerhouse actor he had aquired.
Most recent customer reviews
EVEN WHEN SHOWN IN DVD BLU-RAY THIS BLACK-AND-WHITE MOVIE IS TOO DARK. THE STORY LINE SHOWED ACTOR JAMES MASON IN ONE OF HIS FIRST LEADING MAN MOVIES, BUT IT WAS HARD TO BELIEVE HE... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Richmonpoormon
This film is a classic from Carol Reed, director of The Third Man. The story covers one day in the life of an IRA gunman who is gravely wounded in a heist in Belfast. Read morePublished on Dec 9 2011 by Dr. Pat O'Neill
Well I am not going to delve into facts expressed more eloquently by all those that preceeded me. Suffice to say that the movie is fantastic, so much so that 25 years since I last... Read morePublished on June 9 2003 by jalarium
Belfast is a city of two faces. One city consists of bustling streets and energetic people with ready smiles. Read morePublished on March 16 2002 by William Hare
As an old movie buff, ODD MAN OUT has always ranked as one of my all time favorites, although I hadn't seen it in years until this past weekend. Read morePublished on Jan. 22 2002
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