Brute Force (1947) – Episode 93

Brute Force (1947)

 

Today’s movie is the film noir Brute Force (1947). It tells the tale of a group of prisoners that tell their story using a pin-up picture in their cell. It is noted that the inspiration and violence in this movie is in direct response to the Battle of Alcatraz, May 2-4, 1946[1]. At the federal prisoner in San Francisco Bay, the prisoner fought until their deaths even though their situation was hopeless. Ironically, Burt Lancaster, playing the role of Robert Stroud in Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), helped to end the Alcatraz escape attempt. Of course, this part of the movie is not based on historical fact.

The movie is social commentary on the rise of fascism and Nazism. The pin-up picture of the woman used in the film is said to be a composite of actresses Yvonne De Carlo, Ann Blyth, and Ella Raines, by painter John Decker[2]. I don’t see it.

Actors

This prison movie had a rather large cast included 10 actors …

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Whit Bissell – This Guys is in Everything

Whit Bissell

Whit Bissell was born in New York City in 1909. Whit Bissell came to Hollywood in the 1940s, and by the time he retired he had appeared in over 300 movies and TV series. Sometimes it seems like he is in every movie. Just there moving steadily along and never standing out. However, his performance was always solid. He may be best known for playing the mad scientist who turned Michael Landon into a monster in the 1957 cult classic film I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957). He was also in I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1967). Whit Bissell specialized in playing authority figures such as doctors, military officers, and other authority figures. One of his standout roles was as a lovesick convict in the harsh film noir movie Brute Force (1947).  He was familiar on television in “Bachelor Father” 1957-1960 and “The Time Tunnel” 1966-1967. He was in only in one “Star Trek” episode but it was  “The Trouble with Tribbles” 1967.

Whit Bissell served on the Screen …

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