One hot summer night, notorious fibber Tommy (Bobby Driscoll, on loan from Disney) climbs onto the fire escape of his Lower East Side tenement for a cool breeze. But he gets much more than he bargained for when he witnesses a murder in the apartment above. His parents dismiss his story as just another one of his “tall tales,” but Tommy’s frustration soon turns to terror when he discovers that the couple who committed the murder—the Kellertons—are onto him.
Though best known at the time as a cinematographer of such glossy entertainments as My Man Godfrey and The Talk of the Town, director Ted Tetzlaff uses his experience behind the camera to vividly register the squalor of the LES—derelict buildings, litter-strewn alleys, ubiquitous clotheslines, and encroaching elevated trains. He also channels the Master of Suspense whose Notorious he shot three years earlier, as Tommy and the Kellertons play a perilous game of cat-and-mouse high above the city’s streets and through a condemned apartment house. Based on a Cornell Woolrich story titled “The Boy Cried Murder,” the film’s screenplay is penned by Mel Dinelli—best known for noirs that share The Window’s atmosphere of claustrophobia and despair (The Spiral Staircase, The Reckless Moment).
New 35mm print.
Bing Theater | Included with admission to Little Fugitive. | $5 for this film only | Tickets: 323 857-6010 or purchase online