Sunday, February 10, 2013


The local library here showed this movie yesterday. The audience was small, mostly homeless guys and us. But the film was free and they even provided popcorn.

I didn't expect to like QUICKSAND because I have never been a great Mickey Rooney fan. But he did a fine job of portraying a guy who borrows $20 from his boss' cash register and finds himself in a world of trouble as this kind of movie likes to say. The first sixty minutes were classic noir: Peter Lorre is fantastic as the owner of a beachside arcade. The femme fatale (Cagney) is perfect. The good girl's casted well too.

But then it's as if someone said, "Wait, this is Mickey Rooney. We can't have him hung." So the plot begins to unravel as the writers try to find a way to get him off the hook. Couldn't be clunkier either. And we are left with a very unsatisfying ending. Lots of pluses with atmosphere though.  Great scenes of a small California town and beach community circa 1950. One strange thing: the cops in this film all seem to be in their sixties. Watching them run on the docks made me dizzy.

Anyone out there seen this one?


John Weagly said...

I saw this a few years ago and had the same reaction you did. A really nice little noir about someone who makes one tiny bad choice and then things keep unraveling and unraveling.

But then they tacked on a happy ending.

Still, I liked it quite a bit and think of it often.

Anonymous said...

No I never saw it but it is exactly the kind of movie I watched by the dozens in the '80s. I'm no Mickey Rooney fan either.

Jeff M.

Deb said...

Actors and actresses of the past--especially in supporting roles--often look old to me. We were watching an Alfred Hitchcock Presents marathon one evening, and by about the third episode where I thought the actress playing the wife/girlfriend should have been playing the mother, it dawned on me how much we have internalized our youth at all costs culture.

Not a huge Mickey Rooney fan--possibly because when I was a young girl my cockney mother used the phrase "Mickey Rooney" as a euphemism for male genitalia. No kidding!

David Cranmer said...

You nailed it, Patti. I watched it once and that was enough.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Oh,yes. The femme fatale looks old enough to be his mother.

Anonymous said...

Patti - Mickey Rooney in a noir film. Just doesn't ... do it for me.

On another note. Thanks again for meeting me (and for lunch). Check my blog post for today for what came out of it.