Sam Fuller likes to make movies that startle and surprise moviegoers. Nothing is ever what it seems in a Fuller movie--and even if it is, you're still not certain of what he meant. Corbett and Shigeta are pals who work on the homicide squad of the LA police department. Friends since the Korean War, they joined the force together and are inseparable, until Gloria Pall, a stripper, is murdered and both are told to work on the case. In doing so, they meet beauteous Victoria Shaw. Corbett falls hard for her and is soon followed by Shigeta, who is, by nature, a quieter and more conservative man. Shaw responds to Shigeta's gentleness and is soon enamored of him. Corbett is jealous and Shigeta thinks it's racism, but it isn't. Corbett's feelings are solely motivated by having his best friend in love with the woman he loves. The two battle it out in a kendo match, but
Shigeta goes too far and almost destroys his friend. They continue their investigation, which pits them against a Korean behemoth in the twisting streets of Los Angeles' Little Tokyo, as they chase the killer in and out of the masked and colorfully costumed celebrants of the Japanese New Year. The
killer is eventually cornered and killed. Surprise! It's a woman--Green--who confesses that she killed Pall because she mistakenly thought her boy friend, Morrow, was in love with Pall. This serves as a lesson for Shigeta and he and Shaw wind up the picture in a supercharged kiss. Fuller had an
ordinary little murder mystery here that he added an interracial overlay to and attempted to meld the two. It doesn't work, though Fuller's camera is always interesting and his cross-cutting techniques almost bring off the two themes. In a tiny role as the librarian, look hard for Stafford Repp,
who went on to become a cult figure as Chief O'Hara in TV's "Batman."
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- Rating: NR
- Review: Sam Fuller likes to make movies that startle and surprise moviegoers. Nothing is ever what it seems in a Fuller movie--and even if it is, you're still not certain of what he meant. Corbett and Shigeta are pals who work on the homicide squad of the LA polic… (more)