Across the Bridge

Rod Steiger in Across the Bridge (dir. Ken Annakin, 1957).

A businessman (Rod Steiger) fleeing to Mexico to avoid prosecution for financial corruption throws a fellow passenger off the train in order to assume his identity. Upon deboarding, he finds he has inherited the man's dog. From a short story by Graham Greene. Despite the slightly distracting feature of having lots of Mexicans played by British actors, a fine, taut drama with a Wellesian feel (more, probably, on account of the setting and theme than anything else--stylistically, it's closer to Hitchcock). The central narrative problem is how to make the gradual development of the man/dog relationship interesting without resorting to tired sentiment, and it's handled very intelligently. Steiger becomes more likeable as he starts to fall apart under the pressure of paranoia and guilt, even though there's never any overwrought "moral transformation."


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phaneronoemikon said...

this movie rules. i've seen it twice now. good post.