Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1948)

Genres - Thriller  |   Sub-Genres - Psychological Thriller, Film Noir  |   Run Time - 80 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Night Has a Thousand Eyes is a somewhat lesser-known noir-ish thriller that, despite some flaws, packs quite a punch. Those who insist that a film remain tightly within the boundaries of its perceived genre will have problems with Night, as its main element -- that a man could indeed possess some sort of psychic power that enables him to foresee the future -- may be too "fantastic" for them to accept. Certainly, it adds a different tone to much of the proceedings, making this a noir that is creepy and eerie, rather than simply tense. Director John Farrow does a masterful job of blending these disparate tones, and the result is taut, exciting, and suspenseful. John F. Seitz's shadow-laced cinematography is of enormous help in capturing the film's particular mood, as is the evocative Victor Young score. But it's Edward G. Robinson that really holds the film together, delivering a captivating performance that makes good use of the actor's special talents. The sense of loneliness and sadness that lurks beneath his every word adds a beautiful emotional layer to the scenes, giving them a lovely richness.