Storm Warning

  • 1950
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

Rogers is a high-fashion model from New York City who decides to pay a visit to her sister, Day, in a small southern town. Upon arrival, Rogers accidentally witnesses a group of Klansmen as they raid the local jail, spring a prisoner, then kill the man. Two men, Cochran and Sanders, remove their pointed hoods and Rogers gets a clear view of their faces....read more

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Rogers is a high-fashion model from New York City who decides to pay a visit to her sister, Day, in a small southern town. Upon arrival, Rogers accidentally witnesses a group of Klansmen as they raid the local jail, spring a prisoner, then kill the man. Two men, Cochran and Sanders, remove

their pointed hoods and Rogers gets a clear view of their faces. She finally arrives at Day's home, and is horrified to discover Cochran is her sister's husband. Rogers tells her story to Day, who is expecting a child, but Day tells Rogers to forget about what she has seen. Rogers reluctantly

acquiesces, but Reagan, the local district attorney, learns he has a witness to the crime. He subpoenas Rogers, counting on her testimony to destroy local Klan activity. Rogers, however, keeps her promise to Day and refuses to identify any of the men brought before the court. The Klansmen are

jubilant, and after a booze-filled victory party, Cochran makes a pass at his sister-in-law as she prepares to return to New York. Day tries to stop him, and Cochran responds by striking both women. Rogers then decides to turn Cochran in but is kidnaped and taken to a Klan meeting. There she is

told she will be whipped and banished from the town, and will be further brutalized if she attempts to tell her story to the police. Before the Klan members carry out the flogging, Day arrives bringing with her Reagan and a horde of policemen. A gun battle ensues in which Cochran is killed and Day

is wounded.

This is an intelligent film, marked by the strong performances of the ensemble. Day, in her first non-musical, proved to be a fine dramatic actress. She is well matched by Cochran, as her bigoted, sick-minded spouse, and Rogers as Day's sister. Rogers' part originally was intended for Lauren

Bacall, who declined the role when she decided to join her husband, Humphrey Bogart, on the African location of his film THE AFRICAN QUEEN. Reagan is effective as the public defender concerned with the common good. He is earnest without being self-righteous, determined to see the Klan wiped out in

his community. This film was shot on location in Corona, California, a town the producers felt represented well the quintessential small American town. Corona's layout was ideal for the filmmakers, with several important buildings--such as the library and a church--centered in the city's downtown

area. Filming took place shortly after Christmas and the producers insisted Corona's officials keep up the holiday decorations. This added to the all-American ambience the producers wanted, making the darker side all the more frightening. Ironically, the mythical town depicted here was not that

far removed from the truth. Located near a major prison, Corona was long rumored to be a hotbed for Ku Klux Klan activity. At one point, the future President of the United States was approached by one of Corona's townsmen, who claimed to be a member of the local Klan chapter. He told Reagan his

group had plenty of available robes should the production company need to rent extra costumes. Though the drama is well built and sincerely acted, STORM WARNING has one particularly glaring omission. Despite the film's subject matter and setting, there is not a single black character in the

story.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Rogers is a high-fashion model from New York City who decides to pay a visit to her sister, Day, in a small southern town. Upon arrival, Rogers accidentally witnesses a group of Klansmen as they raid the local jail, spring a prisoner, then kill the man. Tw… (more)

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