Dark Passage


1h 46m 1947
Dark Passage

Brief Synopsis

A man falsely accused of his wife's murder escapes to search for the real killer.

Photos & Videos

Film Details

Genre
Drama
Crime
Mystery
Thriller
Adaptation
Film Noir
Classic Hollywood
Release Date
Sep 27, 1947
Premiere Information
New York opening: week of 6 Sep 1947
Production Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Location
San Francisco, California, USA
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel Dark Passage by David Goodis (New York, 1946).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 46m
Sound
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Synopsis

Convicted wife-murderer Vincent Parry escapes from San Quentin in the back of a garbage truck. He hitches a ride with a man named Baker, but when the announcement of his escape is broadcast over the car radio, Vincent knocks out Baker and steals his clothes. While he is hiding the unconscious man, painter Irene Jansen stops her car nearby. Although Vincent does not know Irene, she knows his name and offers to help him. At her apartment in San Francisco, Irene explains that she followed his trial carefully because her father, who died in prison, was wrongly convicted of his wife's murder, and she believes Vincent is also innocent. While Irene shops for new clothes for Vincent, a woman knocks on the door, and Vincent recognizes her voice as belonging to Madge Rapf, the shrewish friend of his dead wife whose testimony was responsible for his conviction. Irene later reveals that she is dating Madge's former fiancé, Bob. That night, Vincent leaves Irene's apartment, planning to look for evidence on the real murderer. He is picked up by Sam, a taxi driver, who recognizes him and offers to introduce him to plastic surgeon Walter Coley. Vincent waits for his appointment at the apartment of his only friend, musician George Fellsinger. When the operation is over, Vincent returns to George's, planning to stay there until his face is healed, but he discovers that George has been murdered in the meantime. Not knowing where else to go, Vincent walks to Irene's. Outside her apartment, he sees Baker's car, but decides that its presence is only a coincidence. Irene and Vincent soon learn that he has been accused of George's murder. Once his face is healed, Vincent, using the name Alan Lynell, again sets off to prove his innocence. He checks into a hotel where Baker accosts him and demands $60,000 in blackmail. When Vincent protests that he has no money, Baker informs him that Irene is wealthy and insists that Vincent drive him to Irene's apartment. During the drive, Baker tells Vincent that he can get a fake passport at a town in Arizona. Before they get to Irene's, Vincent overcomes Baker and questions him. He learns that he was followed to George's apartment by someone in an orange convertible. Then the two men struggle, and Baker falls to his death over a cliff. Vincent next visits Madge, who owns an orange convertible, and accuses her of murdering his wife and George. Madge admits that she killed Vincent's wife because she was in love with him, and when he rejected her, she framed him for the murder. Vincent asks Madge to sign a confession, but she refuses and jumps to her death. With Madge's death, there is no way for Vincent to prove his innocence. He telephones Irene and asks her to meet him at a certain town in Peru, and one day, much later, she does.

Photo Collections

Dark Passage - Lobby Cards
Dark Passage - Lobby Cards
Dark Passage - Movie Posters
Here is a group of American movie posters from Dark Passage (1947), including the 1-sheet, the 6-sheet, and two styles of 22 x 28 half-sheets.

Videos

Movie Clip

Trailer

Hosted Intro

Film Details

Genre
Drama
Crime
Mystery
Thriller
Adaptation
Film Noir
Classic Hollywood
Release Date
Sep 27, 1947
Premiere Information
New York opening: week of 6 Sep 1947
Production Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Location
San Francisco, California, USA
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel Dark Passage by David Goodis (New York, 1946).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 46m
Sound
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Articles

Dark Passage


While it might not rank as a favorite film among those who love the screen team of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, you have to admit Dark Passage (1947) has one of the great screen gimmicks of all time. For the first forty minutes of the film, you see everything through the eyes of the main character - an escaped prisoner from San Quentin who eludes the authorities while making his way to a plastic surgeon who will give him a new face. When the bandages finally come off, the audience gets their first look at this wanted fugitive as he studies himself in a mirror. And guess what? He looks just like Humphrey Bogart!

To be perfectly honest, the subjective camera technique wasn't a new idea and had been utilized the previous year in Robert Montgomery's innovative detective thriller, Lady in the Lake (1946). But the gimmick is still fun, and the San Francisco locations are a definite asset.

This was Bacall and Bogart's third movie together, and they were still in the honeymoon stage of their marriage, enjoying their accommodations at the Mark Hopkins Hotel with meals at the Top of the Mark during the filming of Dark Passage. Bogie was also the highest paid actor in Hollywood (he averaged $450,000 a year) at the time, which didn't depress him in the least.

There was one problem though. In her autobiography, By Myself, Lauren Bacall wrote, "Toward the end of shooting I became aware of Bogie's nerves; if the phone rang, he'd tense up, didn't want to answer it, didn't want to speak to any except the closest. He'd noticed a bare spot on his cheek where his beard was not growing. The one spot increased to several, then he'd wake up in the morning and find clumps of hair on the pillow. That alarmed him. It's one thing to be bald with a rim of hair, an actor could always wear a hairpiece, but without the rim it would have to be a full wig. The more hair fell out, the more nervous he got, and the more nervous he got, the more hair fell out. In the last scene of Dark Passage he wore a complete wig. He panicked - his livelihood hung in the balance. A visit to the doctor was in order. He never went to doctors. The verdict was that he had a disease known as alopecia areata - in layman's terms, hair falls out as a result of vitamin deficiencies. He was plain worn out - the years of mistreating himself in bars and an unsteady diet had added up to this. It would grow back, but he'd need B-12 shots twice a week...scalp treatments...more food...in general, more care. That was a relief to us both. His next film was going to be The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948) with John Huston, and he'd have had to wear a wig for that anyway."

Director: Delmer Daves
Producer: Jerry Wald, Jack L. Warner (executive)
Screenplay: Delmer Daves, based on the novel by David Goodis
Cinematography: Sid Hickox
Editor: David Weisbart
Art Direction: Charles H. Clarke
Music: Maz Steiner (uncredited), Franz Waxman
Cast: Humphrey Bogart (Vincent Parry), Lauren Bacall (Irene Jansen), Bruce Bennett (Bob Rapf), Agnes Moorehead (Madge Rapf), Tom D'Andrea (Sam, Taxi Driver)
BW-107m. Close captioning. Descriptive Video.

by Jeff Stafford
Dark Passage

Dark Passage

While it might not rank as a favorite film among those who love the screen team of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, you have to admit Dark Passage (1947) has one of the great screen gimmicks of all time. For the first forty minutes of the film, you see everything through the eyes of the main character - an escaped prisoner from San Quentin who eludes the authorities while making his way to a plastic surgeon who will give him a new face. When the bandages finally come off, the audience gets their first look at this wanted fugitive as he studies himself in a mirror. And guess what? He looks just like Humphrey Bogart! To be perfectly honest, the subjective camera technique wasn't a new idea and had been utilized the previous year in Robert Montgomery's innovative detective thriller, Lady in the Lake (1946). But the gimmick is still fun, and the San Francisco locations are a definite asset. This was Bacall and Bogart's third movie together, and they were still in the honeymoon stage of their marriage, enjoying their accommodations at the Mark Hopkins Hotel with meals at the Top of the Mark during the filming of Dark Passage. Bogie was also the highest paid actor in Hollywood (he averaged $450,000 a year) at the time, which didn't depress him in the least. There was one problem though. In her autobiography, By Myself, Lauren Bacall wrote, "Toward the end of shooting I became aware of Bogie's nerves; if the phone rang, he'd tense up, didn't want to answer it, didn't want to speak to any except the closest. He'd noticed a bare spot on his cheek where his beard was not growing. The one spot increased to several, then he'd wake up in the morning and find clumps of hair on the pillow. That alarmed him. It's one thing to be bald with a rim of hair, an actor could always wear a hairpiece, but without the rim it would have to be a full wig. The more hair fell out, the more nervous he got, and the more nervous he got, the more hair fell out. In the last scene of Dark Passage he wore a complete wig. He panicked - his livelihood hung in the balance. A visit to the doctor was in order. He never went to doctors. The verdict was that he had a disease known as alopecia areata - in layman's terms, hair falls out as a result of vitamin deficiencies. He was plain worn out - the years of mistreating himself in bars and an unsteady diet had added up to this. It would grow back, but he'd need B-12 shots twice a week...scalp treatments...more food...in general, more care. That was a relief to us both. His next film was going to be The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948) with John Huston, and he'd have had to wear a wig for that anyway." Director: Delmer Daves Producer: Jerry Wald, Jack L. Warner (executive) Screenplay: Delmer Daves, based on the novel by David Goodis Cinematography: Sid Hickox Editor: David Weisbart Art Direction: Charles H. Clarke Music: Maz Steiner (uncredited), Franz Waxman Cast: Humphrey Bogart (Vincent Parry), Lauren Bacall (Irene Jansen), Bruce Bennett (Bob Rapf), Agnes Moorehead (Madge Rapf), Tom D'Andrea (Sam, Taxi Driver) BW-107m. Close captioning. Descriptive Video. by Jeff Stafford

Dark Passage


While it might not rank as a favorite film among those who love the screen team of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, you have to admit Dark Passage - now on DVD - has one of the great screen gimmicks of all time. For the first forty minutes of the film, you see everything through the eyes of the main character - an escaped prisoner from San Quentin who eludes the authorities while making his way to a plastic surgeon who will give him a new face. When the bandages finally come off, the audience gets their first look at this wanted fugitive as he studies himself in a mirror. And guess what? He looks just like Humphrey Bogart!

To be perfectly honest, the subjective camera technique wasn't a new idea and had been utilized the previous year in Robert Montgomery's innovative detective thriller, Lady in the Lake (1946). But the gimmick is still fun, and the San Francisco locations are a definite asset.

This was Bacall and Bogart's third movie together, and they were still in the honeymoon stage of their marriage, enjoying their accommodations at the Mark Hopkins Hotel with meals at the Top of the Mark during the filming of Dark Passage. Bogie was also the highest paid actor in Hollywood (he averaged $450,000 a year) at the time, which didn't depress him in the least.

There was one problem though. In her autobiography, By Myself, Lauren Bacall wrote, "Toward the end of shooting I became aware of Bogie's nerves - if the phone rang, he'd tense up, didn't want to answer it, didn't want to speak to any except the closest. He'd noticed a bare spot on his cheek where his beard was not growing. The one spot increased to several - then he'd wake up in the morning and find clumps of hair on the pillow. That alarmed him. It's one thing to be bald with a rim of hair, an actor could always wear a hairpiece, but without the rim it would have to be a full wig. The more hair fell out, the more nervous he got, and the more nervous he got, the more hair fell out. In the last scene of Dark Passage he wore a complete wig. He panicked - his livelihood hung in the balance. A visit to the doctor was in order. He never went to doctors. The verdict was that he had a disease known as alopecia areata - in layman's terms, hair falls out as a result of vitamin deficiencies. He was plain worn out - the years of mistreating himself in bars and an unsteady diet had added up to this. It would grow back, but he'd need B-12 shots twice a week - scalp treatments, "more food" in general, more care. That was a relief to us both. His next film was going to be The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948) with John Huston, and he'd have had to wear a wig for that anyway."

The Warner Video DVD of Dark Passage looks clean and sharp. You can now trash your VHS copy which was probably recorded off of a television broadcast (and was probably a 16mm TV print). This is the way to go. It also has two fun extra features: The cartoon "Slick Hare" in which animated versions of Bogie and Bacall make cameo appearances and a featurette on the making of Dark Passage - "Hold Your Breath and Cross Your Fingers."

For more information about Dark Passage, visit Warner Video. To order Dark Passage, go to TCM Shopping.


by Jeff Stafford

Dark Passage

While it might not rank as a favorite film among those who love the screen team of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, you have to admit Dark Passage - now on DVD - has one of the great screen gimmicks of all time. For the first forty minutes of the film, you see everything through the eyes of the main character - an escaped prisoner from San Quentin who eludes the authorities while making his way to a plastic surgeon who will give him a new face. When the bandages finally come off, the audience gets their first look at this wanted fugitive as he studies himself in a mirror. And guess what? He looks just like Humphrey Bogart! To be perfectly honest, the subjective camera technique wasn't a new idea and had been utilized the previous year in Robert Montgomery's innovative detective thriller, Lady in the Lake (1946). But the gimmick is still fun, and the San Francisco locations are a definite asset. This was Bacall and Bogart's third movie together, and they were still in the honeymoon stage of their marriage, enjoying their accommodations at the Mark Hopkins Hotel with meals at the Top of the Mark during the filming of Dark Passage. Bogie was also the highest paid actor in Hollywood (he averaged $450,000 a year) at the time, which didn't depress him in the least. There was one problem though. In her autobiography, By Myself, Lauren Bacall wrote, "Toward the end of shooting I became aware of Bogie's nerves - if the phone rang, he'd tense up, didn't want to answer it, didn't want to speak to any except the closest. He'd noticed a bare spot on his cheek where his beard was not growing. The one spot increased to several - then he'd wake up in the morning and find clumps of hair on the pillow. That alarmed him. It's one thing to be bald with a rim of hair, an actor could always wear a hairpiece, but without the rim it would have to be a full wig. The more hair fell out, the more nervous he got, and the more nervous he got, the more hair fell out. In the last scene of Dark Passage he wore a complete wig. He panicked - his livelihood hung in the balance. A visit to the doctor was in order. He never went to doctors. The verdict was that he had a disease known as alopecia areata - in layman's terms, hair falls out as a result of vitamin deficiencies. He was plain worn out - the years of mistreating himself in bars and an unsteady diet had added up to this. It would grow back, but he'd need B-12 shots twice a week - scalp treatments, "more food" in general, more care. That was a relief to us both. His next film was going to be The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948) with John Huston, and he'd have had to wear a wig for that anyway." The Warner Video DVD of Dark Passage looks clean and sharp. You can now trash your VHS copy which was probably recorded off of a television broadcast (and was probably a 16mm TV print). This is the way to go. It also has two fun extra features: The cartoon "Slick Hare" in which animated versions of Bogie and Bacall make cameo appearances and a featurette on the making of Dark Passage - "Hold Your Breath and Cross Your Fingers." For more information about Dark Passage, visit Warner Video. To order Dark Passage, go to TCM Shopping. by Jeff Stafford

Quotes

Trivia

The actual Art Deco apartment used in the film (located at 1360 Montgomery St in San Francisco) had to be torn down in the mid 1990's after a landslide washed away most of the foundation soil from the hill-side building, leaving the beautiful home dangling dangerously over the edge. However, when the city demolition team showed up to tear the building down, they found it so well built that, even with more the half the structure hanging out over space, they were unable to simply pull it down. They eventually resorted to cutting the home to pieces with large chainsaws and carrying away the scrap.

When Vincent reads the newspaper clipping about Irene's father, the accompanying photograph of her father is that of director/screenwriter Delmer Daves.

Notes

According to a September 17, 1945 Hollywood Reporter news item, Warner Bros. paid $25,000 for the rights to the David Goodis novel, which was serialized in The Saturday Evening Post from 20 July-September 7, 1946. Some scenes were shot on location in San Francisco, and many reviews noted the effective use of the city in the background footage. According to modern sources, "Irene's" house was torn down following the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Fall September 27, 1947

Completed shooting January 30, 1947.

Released in United States Fall September 27, 1947