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 MOVIE: Detour (1945)

Based on novel by Martin Goldsmith

Screenplay by Martin Goldsmith and Martin Mooney

Directed by Edgar G. Ulmer

Tom Neal, Claudia Drake, Edmund Mac Donald, Ann Savage

There are some that consider this the ultimate in film noir. If not, it is at least a very good introduction. You decide by watching the full movie above.

When a New York piano player Al Roberts (Neal) looses his singer girlfriend Sue Harvey (Drake) to Hollywood, he can’t help but feel depressed. With little money in his pocket, he decides to hitchhike to California, so the couple can be together.

Along the way he meets Charles Haskell (MacDonald). who offers him a ride. But when the driver dies Roberts fears the police will accuse him of murder. Let’s blame the lone hitchhiker! In the pouring rain, he ditches the body. In order to keep both the car and the money, he assumes the identity of the dead man.

He returns the good deed as he offers a ride to a hitchhiker, Vera (Savage). She soon calls his bluff.

Roberts life spins out of control. He takes a detour with no return.

This movie is told in narrative as Roberts explains his actions. The question is:

Do you believe him?

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