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Blast of Silence (Criterion) (1961)

Cast: Allen Baron, Allen Baron, Molly McCarthy, more...
Director: Allen Baron, Allen Baron
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Studio: Criterion
Genre: Film Noir, Vintage Noir, Crime, Classic Crime, Criterion Collection
Running Time: 77 min.
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Synopsis
A few days in the life of a murderer go under the microscope in this offbeat and intense low-budget film noir, the first feature from director Allen Baron. Frankie Bono (Baron) is a hired killer from Cleveland who travels to New York City a few days before Christmas on an assignment. Bono, a bitter loner who has few friends and little use for relationships with others, has been brought to the Big Apple to rub out Troiano (Peter Clume), a second-rate mobster. After a less than pleasant encounter with Big Ralph (Larry Tucker), a rotund underground gun dealer, Bono begins casing out Troiano and discovers his target is out of town for a few days, giving him some time to kill. Bono bumps into a childhood friend who thinks he could use a friend and introduces Frankie to Lorrie (Molly McCarthy), but when she invites him to her flat for dinner, the evening doesn't go well and Bono feels more alienated than ever. While keeping tabs on Troiano, Bono runs into Big Ralph again, with consequences that put the hit man and his career in great danger. Blast of Silence features a distinctive and highly dramatic second-person narration read by Lionel Stander (whose name does not appear in the credits); the narration was written by the then-blacklisted Waldo Salt under the name Mel Davenport. Director Allen Baron originally cast Peter Falk as Frankie Bono, but ended up playing the lead after Falk dropped out to take a better paying role in the crime drama Murder Inc. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide




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