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Force of Evil

Force of Evil

Force of Evil is a 1948 American crime film noir directed by Abraham Polonsky, who was previously known as a screenwriter for the boxing film Body and Soul (1947). Like Body and Soul, the film starred John Garfield. The film was adapted by Abraham Polonsky and Ira Wolfert from Wolfert's novel Tucker's People. The film marked the first on screen acting role of Beau Bridges, who was 7 years old at the time of the film's release.

Plot

The drama tells of a lawyer, Joe Morse (Garfield), working for a powerful gangster, Tucker, who wishes to consolidate and control the numbers racket in New York. This means assuming control of the many smaller numbers rackets, one of which is run by Morse's older brother Leo Morse (Thomas Gomez). The brothers are both tainted by the underworld and neither are free from corruption; the terse, melodramatic thriller incorporates realist location photography, almost poetic dialogue and frequent biblical allusions (Cain and Abel, Judas's betrayal, stigmata).

Awards