Paul Henreid and Joan Bennett) and a screenwriter of several other excellent films (Daniel Fuchs) but a Hungarian director (István "Steve" Székely) whose main claim to fame would be The Day of the Triffids -- HOLLOW TRIUMPH, aka The Man Who Murdered Himself aka The Scar, looks today very much like a would-be hard-boiled noir that occasionally veers perilously close to unintentional camp.
The occasion for covering it comes from its release, via Film Chest, this coming Tuesday, March 11, in a new high-definition restoration from the original 35mm film elements. The restoration looks very good -- crisp black-and-white cinematog-raphy (by the great John Alton) with few moments in which that restoration loses luster.
For Men Only (which he also directed) -- about a college hazing death sounds much more worthwhile, as well as, of course, ever timely. The actor went on to direct a number of other films and television shows, as well as continuing to act until the late 1970s (he died in 1992). A somewhat wooden performer, he still managed to score well in several memorable movies, including Casablanca and Now, Voyager. With his rather thick Austrian accent, he came across as alternately classy or evil, as needed.
Eduard Franz, above, left) has no accent at all. If this were the movie's biggest problem, however, we'd be lucky.
John Qualen (above, left) as the dentist who works in the same building as our doppelganger doctor. You may also notice a very young Jack Webb (of Dragnet fame), below, left, making his movie debut here. Webb has no dialog (that I caught, at least) but his several short scenes let us see him visually long enough to recognize that very noticeable (as they used to call it it) kisser.
The 1948 film, in its new restoration and running 82 minutes, hits the streets this coming Tuesday, March 11, on DVD only, with a suggested retail price of just $12. It will be available for pur-chase or rental via Amazon and I hope eventually on Netflix, where there's yet no word of this title.