The boxing drama Body and Soul benefits from a riveting screenplay by Abraham Polonsky, intense editing from Francis D. Lyon and Robert Parrish, and innovative cinematography by the legendary James Wong Howe. Tying all of these elements together is director Robert Rossen, who coaxes a superb performance from John Garfield as the troubled boxer Charlie Davis. Rossen would explore similar themes of redemption in sports and gambling in 1961's The Hustler. Howe's tight shot composition would influence similar classics over the years, most notably Martin Scorsese's Raging Bull; the similarly influential work of Lyon and Parrish would garner the team an Oscar.
by Richard Gilliam review