Johnny Eager (1941)

Genres - Crime  |   Sub-Genres - Crime Drama, Melodrama  |   Release Date - Dec 9, 1941 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 107 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Often mentioned as one of the earliest attempts at film noir, Johnny Eager is really too pretty to count, what with Robert Taylor and Lana Turner both constantly positioning themselves to get the better key lights. Van Heflin, as Taylor's alcoholic lawyer friend, easily takes the acting honors and would quite deservedly win a best supporting actor Academy Award, but both Taylor and Turner are actually surprisingly potent and a solid corps of supporting players add color to the sometimes overly melodramatic proceedings. Mervyn LeRoy, who used to be grittier at Warner Bros., directs with his usual professionalism and the production benefits from the accustomed MGM care.